Berkshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust: Healthcare from the heart of your community

Stroke

As strokes are the third largest cause of death in the UK, it is quite likely that you will know or have heard of someone who has been affected by one. The fact that strokes are quite common does not make them any less scary or less serious. With more than 150,000 people suffering strokes every year in the UK, it is important that you know how to recognise the signs and know what to do if you think someone is having one. If you are in doubt you should call 999, as it is very important that strokes are treated as soon as possible.

At Berkshire Healthcare, we have two teams of specialists dedicated to helping you and your family cope with the effects of stroke. Depending on the severity of the stroke, you may experience mild, short-term effects or, with more severe strokes, longer lasting and life changing conditions. Regardless of how a stroke affects you, our Neuro - Rehabiltation and/or Earlier Supported Discharge teams will work with you to support your recovery.

What is a stroke and what are the symptoms?

The most common form of stroke happens when the blood supply to part of the brain is interrupted and brain cells are damaged or die.

Symptoms can appear and then disappear but usually come on quite quickly. The main things to look out for if you think someone might be having a stroke include:

  • their face dropping on one side, not being able to smile or their mouth or eye drooping
  • not able to lift one or both arms and keep them there because of arm weakness or numbness
  • their speech becoming slurred or garbled, or not being able to talk at all despite appearing to be awake

Depending on which part of the brain is affected, there could be other symptoms. You can read about other symptoms of stroke here.

How we help you

The type and severity of your stroke will decide how we help you. If you need specialist care, you will usually be cared for by our Earlier Supported Discharge or community based Neuro- Rehabilitation teams.

Both teams offer home based physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech and language therapy and psychological support, as well as advice about self-care, medicines, and how to reduce the risk of further strokes.

If the care you need is less intense, you may be seen by our Intermediate Care or Reablement teams. Intermediate care and reablement usually takes place in your home. We help you to rebuild your strength, increase your mobility, learn or relearn skills, and regain the confidence to live as independently as possible.

The psychologists in the team run a joint group with Headway (the brain injuries charity) called “Living With Brain Injury”. The group helps people who have suffered a stroke to cope with everyday life. The group is very popular and has been well received by the attendees. If you are working with one of our care teams, your therapist can give you details about the group.

Need more information?

The Community Based Neurological Rehabilitation Team (CBNRT)
Information about whether this service is the right one for you and what care you can expect

Earlier Supported Discharge
Information about whether this service is the right one for you and what care you can expect