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5 Ways Hydrotherapy Benefits Elderly Stroke Survivors

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People who survive strokes are often left with brain and nerve damage that makes it difficult to function. To recover, stroke survivors often need intensive therapy. Hydrotherapy is a special form of therapy that involves doing exercises in pools, and it can be particularly useful for seniors recovering from strokes. Those who are in stroke recovery may receive these five benefits from regular hydrotherapy. 

1. Boosts Cardio Capability

Hydrotherapy is a great way for stroke survivors to work out. Many people in recovery cannot exercise on land due to balance or strength issues, but working out in water lets them exercise more effectively. The gentle cardio exercises in hydrotherapy strengthen the heart and lungs, which boosts overall endurance and cardio abilities so seniors can walk farther or climb up stairs without getting winded. 

When recovering from a stroke, maintaining a high quality of life can be challenging for some seniors, but professional caregivers can help them obtain this goal. Omaha at-home care experts are available to provide high-quality care to seniors on an as-needed basis. From assistance with mobility and exercise to providing transportation to the doctor’s office and social events, there are a variety of ways professional caregivers can help your aging loved one continue to live independently.

2. Enhances Self-Confidence

Many stroke survivors find themselves feeling frustrated and uncertain because their body no longer responds to mental instructions. However, being in water takes the weight off a senior’s body, making it easier to move around again. Seniors who cannot walk on land may get a huge boost of optimism from being able to walk on an underwater treadmill at hydrotherapy. This form of therapy is great because it helps seniors feel capable and independent again.

3. Decreases Stress

Hydrotherapy is not just used as a form of exercise. For many seniors, sitting in a warm pool can be a way to calm down and relax. In the time after a stroke, it is important for seniors to keep their stress levels low because otherwise they may experience dangerously high blood pressure levels. Most people feel naturally relaxed in water, so the soothing temperatures and water jets of hydrotherapy can have a very calming effect on stressed seniors.

4. Increases Muscle Strength

Exercising in water might seem like it is easy, but hydrotherapy is actually a great way to build muscle. Even simple movements require seniors to push against the water surrounding them. This constant resistance makes hydrotherapy a more intense workout as well as a great way to build strength in muscles that were weakened by a long stroke recovery. Hydrotherapy is particularly effective at building strength in the legs and arms.

Caring for a senior stroke survivor and helping him or her with hydrotherapy can be overwhelming. Families who find it difficult to care for their aging loved ones without assistance can benefit greatly from professional respite care. Omaha, NE, family caregivers who need a break from their caregiving duties can turn to Home Care Assistance. Using our proprietary Balanced Care Method, our respite caregivers can encourage your loved one to eat well, exercise regularly, get plenty of mental and social stimulation, and focus on other lifestyle factors that promote longevity.

5. Increases Mobility

The increased balance, flexibility, and strength of hydrotherapy all combine to have one major benefit. Seniors who try hydrotherapy can ultimately appreciate better mobility. This therapy enhances both muscle and joint usage so seniors can have a wider range of motion. Hydrotherapy is ideal for seniors who have been having difficulty moving around on their own, and many find regular hydrotherapy can return them to their mobility level before the stroke.

Recovering from a stroke, managing the symptoms of Alzheimer’s, and a variety of other health-related situations can make it difficult for a senior to continue living at home without someone there to help. Omaha, Nebraska, live-in home care professionals are trained to help seniors who need 24/7 assistance. With the help of a live-in caregiver, your elderly loved one can maintain a higher quality of life while aging in place. To hire a dedicated caregiver for your senior loved one, call Home Care Assistance at (402) 261-5158 today.