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Identifying What Often Goes Unnoticed: Executive Function Therapy After Stroke


At True Self Speech Therapy, we understand the profound impact executive function has on our clients' lives. From planning and decision-making to daily activities and emotional regulation, executive function plays a pivotal role in navigating the complexities of everyday life. Our approach to treating executive function clients focuses on empowering individuals to regain control and improve their quality-of-life post-stroke.


Understanding Executive Dysfunction After Stroke Executive function impairment following a stroke often goes unnoticed, yet its effects on a person's ability to initiate, plan, and execute tasks can be profound. Research-based insights reveal that stroke-related cognitive impairment frequently encompasses executive dysfunction, impacting decision-making, mobility, emotional stability, and daily activities.

Diagnostic Precision for Tailored Treatment Our diagnostic process at True Self Speech Therapy involves a comprehensive evaluation using standardized tests alongside real-life observations of a client's performance in everyday tasks. This meticulous approach ensures a nuanced understanding of each individual's executive function challenges.

Treatment Strategies: Holistic and Customized Our treatment plans are tailored to each client's specific needs, acknowledging the multifaceted nature of executive function deficits post-stroke. Leveraging insights from research studies (references provided below), our strategies encompass:


  1. Information & Coping Mechanisms: Educating both clients and their families about executive dysfunction fosters understanding and reduces the emotional burden. It equips them with coping strategies to navigate daily challenges.

  2. Physical Activity & Lifestyle Modifications: Incorporating physical activity into therapy can potentially prevent or alleviate executive dysfunction. Research suggests that exercise may improve cerebral perfusion and stimulate nerve growth factors, aiding in functional recovery.

  3. Cognitive Rehabilitation: Evidence-based cognitive training focuses on problem-solving techniques and self-monitoring during tasks. These methods, backed by research, enhance functional recovery and promote rehabilitation of other cognitive functions.

  4. Medication and Secondary Prophylaxis: In some cases, antidepressants have shown promise in improving function post-stroke. Our practice emphasizes working with your doctor to use secondary prophylaxis against stroke risk factors, aiming to prevent further cognitive decline.


Looking Ahead: Research & Collaboration Despite advancements, there are ongoing gaps in understanding executive dysfunction post-stroke. True Self Speech Therapy is committed to staying abreast of the latest research, bridging clinical experience with evolving. We advocate interdisciplinary collaboration and effective treatment approaches.

References:

Torgersen Engstad, R., Torgersen Engstad, T., Davanger, S., Bruun Wyller, T. “Eksekutiv svikt etter hjerneslag”. Tidsskrift for den Norske Laegeforening, ISSN: 0029-2001, Vol: 133, Issue: 5, Page: 524-527 (2013).


We at True Self Speech Therapy are committed to providing comprehensive and research-based care to help our clients rediscover their capabilities and embrace life with renewed confidence and independence.

For inquiries or to schedule an assessment, contact us today to embark on your journey towards improved executive function and a better quality of life.


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