Charities in Wales are raising awareness of the need for increased support for stroke survivors’ mental health. The Stroke Association and Mind Cymru have highlighted the lack of specialist services available to address the mental health challenges faced by stroke survivors. A recent survey conducted by the Stroke Association revealed that approximately three-quarters of stroke survivors experience mental health problems, yet only 3% receive the necessary support. This alarming disparity has prompted calls for action to ensure that stroke survivors receive the support they need.
One stroke survivor, Melissa Broad, shared her personal experience of feeling “abandoned” after her stroke in 2011. She expressed her disappointment at the lack of mention of the potential impact on mental health during her recovery. Ms. Broad struggled with memory loss, difficulty speaking, and anxiety, which made her feel isolated and made leaving her house challenging. Despite being told she would not be able to have more children, she went on to have two daughters. Reflecting on her experience, she emphasized the importance of receiving support for mental health after a stroke, as it can have a significant impact on a person’s entire life.
The joint report by the Stroke Association and Mind Cymru highlights the limited availability of specialized mental health support for stroke survivors. It underscores the urgent need for improved access to these services. While the Stroke Association provides support for those severely affected by strokes, there is a gap in assistance for individuals dealing with mild to moderate depression or anxiety. The report calls on healthcare providers to recognize the crucial role of identifying and managing mental health issues during stroke rehabilitation and long-term recovery.
The Stroke Association and Mind Cymru also call on the NHS and social services to collaborate in ensuring that stroke survivors receive timely and high-quality support for their mental health and well-being. The Welsh government has acknowledged the issue and is working with organizations like the Stroke Association to provide support. They are committed to providing access to cognitive and psychological support services to aid stroke survivors in their recovery.
In conclusion, charities in Wales are urging for increased support for stroke survivors’ mental health. The lack of specialist services and limited access to support is a significant concern, as three-quarters of stroke survivors face mental health challenges. The joint report by the Stroke Association and Mind Cymru emphasizes the need for improved access to specialized mental health support. The Welsh government is collaborating with organizations to address this issue and ensure that stroke survivors receive the necessary support for their mental health and well-being.