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Post-Stroke Emotional and Behavioural Challenges for the Elderly

Following a stroke, seniors often experience emotional and behavioural changes that can be challenging for both them and the family members providing North Coast in-home care. Being aware of the following emotional side effects of a stroke can help you reduce the impact they have on your senior loved one’s life and relationships.

Inappropriate Emotional Responses

Emotional lability can develop after a brain injury and involves exaggerated emotional responses that may not fit the situation. For example, your loved one may cry without actually feeling sadness or laugh when he or she is angry. Distractions sometimes help seniors with emotional lability change to different emotions.


Stroke survivors often leave the hospital with their lifestyles completely changed. Your loved one may grieve the loss of certain abilities, and he or she may be worried about the future. It is important to understand a certain amount of sadness is normal, and most seniors slowly adjust to their new lifestyles. However, prolonged depression affecting your loved one’s health may warrant further medical treatment.

Personality Changes

Strokes can have widely varying effects on a person, depending on the location and severity of any brain lesions. Sometimes these brain injuries occur in areas that affect personality. For example, you may notice your loved one suddenly becoming shy and withdrawn even though he or she has always been outgoing. Some stroke survivors recognise these changes and may become upset. For this reason, it is best to avoid commenting on any negative changes. Instead, plan activities and conversations that help your loved one stay focused on being positive.

Social Withdrawal

After a stroke, some seniors isolate themselves due to embarrassment concerning their physical appearance or ability to speak. However, social support is essential for providing your loved one with the motivation he or she needs to recover. Companionship from a North Coast stroke caregiver can ease your loved one’s concerns about judgment and help him or her begin to accept changes as he or she works to regain abilities.

The recovery following a stroke may at times become physically and emotionally overwhelming for you and your loved one. Turn to Home Care Assistance for additional support. Our caregivers are available for both part-time and live-in care and can provide social stimulation, assist with mobility, and help with many important daily tasks. In addition to stroke care, we also offer comprehensive Parkinson’s, dementia, and Alzheimer’s home care North Coast seniors and their families can count on. For more information and to schedule a no-obligation consultation with one of our experienced Care Managers, call (02) 6646 3527 today.