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Stroke Insights and Answers > Emotional and Psychological Support After Stroke

Emotional and Psychological Support After a Stroke

Should I “Give Up” After A Stroke?

No, you should not give up after a stroke. Stroke recovery can be a challenging and lengthy process, but it is important to maintain hope and stay motivated. Many stroke survivors make significant improvements and regain a substantial level of functionality and quality of life with time, effort, and appropriate support. Here are a few reasons why you should not give up:

  • Neuroplasticity: The brain has an incredible ability to reorganize and adapt through neuroplasticity. With proper rehabilitation and therapy, the brain can form new neural connections and pathways, allowing for recovery and improved function.
  • Rehabilitation: Rehabilitation programs, including occupational therapy (OT), physical therapy (PT), speech therapy (SLP), and cognitive rehabilitation are designed to help stroke survivors regain lost functions, improve mobility, regain independence, and enhance overall quality of life. With the right support, guidance, and technology, rehabilitation can make a significant difference in the stroke recovery journey.
  • Ongoing advancements in technology and medicine: Medical research and technological advancements expand our understanding of stroke recovery and treatment options. New therapies, technologies, and interventions are constantly being developed, offering more possibilities for improved outcomes.
  • Support systems: There are various support systems available to stroke survivors, including healthcare professionals, rehabilitation specialists, support groups, and caregivers. These individuals and groups can provide emotional support, practical assistance, and valuable resources to help you navigate the challenges of stroke recovery.
  • Personal growth: Stroke recovery is not just about regaining lost function; it’s also an opportunity for personal growth and resilience. Many stroke survivors and their families report increased self-awareness, a reevaluation of priorities, and a renewed appreciation of life. Stroke rehabilitation journeys can be a transformative experience, allowing the development of new strengths and possibilities.

It is important to remember that stroke recovery is a gradual process with highs and lows. Each person’s journey is unique. Celebrate the small victories and focus on progress rather than perfection.

How Can I Manage Depression or Emotional Changes After A Stroke?

Emotional changes and mood disturbances, such as depression and anxiety, are prevalent after stroke. These can be amplified depending on the location in the brain in which the stroke occurred. It is estimated that 32-61% of individuals who have experienced a stroke experience depression or some other change in emotions.

Mood changes can be due to damage to the area of the brain which regulates behavior, or they can be due to a difference in physical or cognitive ability, leading to feelings of depression or being withdrawn. Changes in mood can also be affected by impairments following strokes such as decreased memory, initiation, language processing, and visual perception. In turn, this can cause confusion, leading to anger and outbursts.

Some general ways to manage depression or emotional changes after a stroke are:

For a comprehensive list of additional ways to manage common emotional changes and mood disorders after stroke, visit Post-Stroke Mood Disturbances.

Are There Any Support Groups Or Resources For Stroke Survivors?

Support groups and resources for stroke survivors and their caregivers can provide valuable assistance, information, and emotional support during the recovery journey. Here are some options to consider:

Stroke Support Groups for Survivors:

  • American Stroke Association Support Network: Offers online support communities for stroke survivors and caregivers.
  • National Stroke Association Support Groups: Provides information on local support groups and online communities.
  • Check for local stroke survivor support groups on or similar platforms.
  • Hospitals and Rehabilitation Centers: Many healthcare facilities host stroke survivor support groups.

Caregiver Support Groups:

  • Family Caregiver Alliance: Offers resources, support, and caregiver-specific information.
  • Alzheimer’s Association: While primarily focused on Alzheimer’s, they often provide resources and support for caregivers dealing with various cognitive and neurological conditions.
  • AARP Caregiver Resources: Provides articles, guides, and forums for caregivers.

Online Communities and Forums:

  • Reddit: The subreddit r/stroke has discussions, advice, and support from stroke survivors and caregivers.
  • Inspire: An online community with specific stroke-related forums.

Additional Resources:

  • Neurolutions: Read blogs on topics related to stroke and stroke recovery at
  • America Stroke Association Support Group Finder: Find a registered stroke support group near you by entering your area code.
  • American Heart Association/American Stroke Association: Offers information, resources, and support for both survivors and caregivers.
  • Stroke Association (UK): Provides support and information for stroke survivors and their families.
  • National Stroke Foundation (Australia): Offers resources and support for stroke survivors and their families.
  • Local Community Centers and Hospitals: Check with your local healthcare facilities and community centers for support groups and resources.
  • Facebook Groups: There are many Facebook groups dedicated to stroke survivors and caregivers where you can connect with others in similar situations.

Remember that support groups can vary in format, from in-person meetings to online forums and video conferences. Choose the option that works best for your needs and comfort level. Additionally, don’t hesitate to reach out to healthcare professionals for recommendations and guidance on finding the most suitable support resources for your specific situation.

For more information, visit: Finding Stroke Support Groups

Browse More Stroke Insights and Answers by Category

Adapting to Life Post-Stroke: Adapt and Thrive


Optimizing Stroke Rehab: Maximize Your Rehab


Caregiving in Stroke Recovery: Support for Caregivers


Preventing Stroke Recurrence:
Learn About Prevention


Physical Challenges Post-Stroke: Manage Physical Challenges


Support After Stroke:
Explore Emotional Recovery


Speech Recovery Strategies: Improve Your Speech


Stroke Recovery Timelines: Understand Recovery Phases