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Communication Tools for Seniors After a Stroke

By Jennifer Thompson, 9:00 am on

When a stroke affects the speech center of the brain, the senior is said to have aphasia. The degree of impairment depends on the amount of damage inflicted and may range from mild to severe. Some seniors understand conversations but are unable to speak. Others have difficulty finding the right words for what they are trying to express. In addition to undergoing speech therapy, providers of stroke care in Nashville can recommend a variety of communication tools to help post-stroke seniors express themselves.

Papers, Pens, and Pictures

A simple pad of paper along with a pen or pencil allows post-stroke seniors to communicate when they have control of their muscles but cannot speak. They can write words or draw pictures of what they are attempting to communicate. Other handy props include appointment books, calendars, newspapers and photographs.

Boogie Boards

A step up from conventional writing tools, boogie boards feature LCD display screens on which post-stroke seniors communicate by writing or drawing. The portable boards also contain a watch-sized battery that erases each message with a simple push of a button. Boogie boards are a convenient option seniors can use to communicate with family caregivers or providers of home care in Nashville, TN.

Communication Boards and Cards

For those unable to express thoughts through the written word, communication boards or cue cards are a low-tech option. The devices feature images that depict common daily activities or needs. Some also have basic words or phrases. Seniors simply point to the images, words, or phrases to communicate effectively. Loved ones also have the option of downloading and creating their own boards or cards by visiting speech therapy websites.

Technological Tools

If your loved one has a smartphone, tablet, desktop, or laptop computer, various apps and programs are available to help seniors communicate by typing or tapping a touch screen. These versatile, high-tech options easily accommodate seniors with aphasia by displaying images or written text, reading text out loud or predicting words and sentences as they are typed.

When seniors experience aphasia after a stroke, it’s important to have the right modes of communication. With help from Home Care Assistance, your loved one will have a trusted companion to help him or her overcome the challenges of stroke recovery. Whether your loved one needs help with communication, physical exercise, or emotional support, our dedicated caregivers will be there. In addition to our stroke services, we also provide comprehensive dementia, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s home care in Nashville. Call a friendly Care Manager today at (615) 656-4999 to schedule a free consultation and learn more about how we can help your loved one.