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Imago Rehab Clients and Caregivers

Caregiver Tips & Resources

Supporting Our Patients

Caregiver Tips & Tools

​Being a caregiver is an important role that can feel overwhelming at times. Becoming a caregiver after a loved one has a stroke is a challenge. Finding a balance between being helpful and helping too much is not easy, and having your loved one complete as much of an activity as they are able to on their own is important. Supporting your loved one's independence can improve morale, boost confidence, and prevent caregiver burnout.


Caregiver burnout is very common and can lead to strained relationships and diminished quality of life. Be sure to take time for yourself. Try to spend time with your loved one, completing activities that benefit both of you.


Here are some additional tips to help both you and the person you are caring for. 

Woman providing support to a parent after stroke


Self-management refers to creating opportunities for independence for the person you are caring for. It is an important part of recovery and rehabilitating a person’s “sense of self” and “humanness.”


Here are some tips to "help your loved one help themselves."

  • One of the best ways to help your loved one is to know when NOT to help. Sometimes re-learning how to do tasks on their own can be the best way to regain independence.

  • Help your loved one participate in daily tasks in any way they can, whether that’s lifting their own arm to put their arm in their shirt or opening containers when you’re cooking a meal.

  • Learning strategies or obtain equipment that promotes independence such as:

    • Built-up handles

    • Active Hands products

    • Using the table or pillow for support

    • Dycem non-slip mats and gripping aids

    • Plating food on a lip plate that is designed to assist people with limited muscle control and/or individuals with the use of only one hand

    • Basically, anything that allows the caregiver to be LESS hands-on

  • Learn to help by NOT helping

    • By doing everything for someone, you’re taking away the little things they still can do

    • One cannot recover without the opportunity to try


Disability Etiquette: Stroke Edition

Here are some tips to enhance your interactions with a loved one who is recovering from a stroke. A few simple actions can go a long way!

Talk to the individual on their affected side:

  • Begin by signaling to the person to look to their affected side

  • And/or approach their unaffected side first so they are aware of your presence


Refrain from using terms like “stroke victim”:

  • Instead, use person-first language, such as “person living with effects of stroke”

Be patient:

  • Allow the individual to take their time to say what they need to (sometimes word finding and producing speech can be hard) 

  • Allow the individual time to try things on their own before jumping in to help

  • Slow your rate of speech so your loved one has ample time to process what you are saying


Don’t assume!

  • Don’t assume that someone can or cannot do something. Instead, ask if you are unsure if they need assistance. This helps you avoid taking independence away from them.

Caregiver & Stroke Survivor Support Groups

Caregivers participating in stroke support group

Use the links below for other helpful information:

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