Friday, February 9th, 2018
Two is stronger than one, and your brain is no exception to the adage. What many people may not realize is that your brain consists of two distinct parts that work together as one, much like your eyes or ears.
Essentially, each side of the brain—left and right—is responsible for carrying out specific tasks. An easy way to understand this concept is to imagine a photograph of a loved one or friend. Immediately, the right side of your brain will see that it’s a person in a kind of setting (visual). But the left side of the brain will be the one to associate that person and place with a specific memory (analytical). You may have heard people say that they’re more “left-brained” or “right-brained”; they are identifying with the side of their brain, and its associated processes, that they feel is more dominant in their thinking. This symbiotic relationship is crucial to how everyone’s mind processes and stores information, so when either side of the brain is damaged by a stroke, there can be specific repercussions.
In most cases, a stroke occurs on one side of the brain. In this article, we examine the right brain in particular, its functions, and share what processes may be affected by a stroke.
When it comes to physical movement, the right side of the brain is responsible for carrying out functions for the left side of the body. The same is true for the opposite—the left side of the brain controls the right side of the body. Although we essentially live with crossed wires in our system, the same principles don’t necessarily apply when it comes to certain cognitive functions for each.
Specific duties performed by the right side consist of:
Taking these things into consideration, it’s easy to see why any disruption to the right brain can be devastating. Unfortunately, a stroke can occur on either side of the brain depending on where the damage takes place. If you or a loved one has suffered from a right brain stroke, it’s important to be aware of what kinds of complications may arise.
Suffering from a right brain stroke is certainly difficult to endure and overcome but, by increasing your awareness of what the potential side effects are, you can better prepare yourself for the road to recovery.
For any survivor to begin to see positive changes after a stroke, the rehabilitation process must start right away. Of course, the pathway to recuperation will be different for every individual, but the process that must always take effect in order to see results is something called neuroplasticity.
Neuroplasticity, in essence, refers to the regenerative properties of the brain—a re-establishment and rearrangement of neural connections. This means that the brain is essentially reprogramming itself in undamaged areas to support damaged ones, and the sooner this activity begins, the sooner one can recover.
To enhance this process, proper execution of rehabilitation exercises—both mental and physical—must be carried out on a regular basis. Over time, consistent and repetitive efforts will aid in constructing healthy neural connections, as well strengthening damaged ones.
In addition to consistency and repetition, there are rehabilitation exercise aids which can enhance the effectiveness of rehab exercises after stroke. These devices offer additional supports that allow the user to execute a wider range of exercises and adjust the difficulty for individualized results. For weakness in the arm or hand, the SaeboGlove, SaeboFlex, SaeboStretch, or SaeboMas can significantly increase the speed and effectiveness of rehabilitation.
Although the difficulties of life post-stroke can seem insurmountable, always remember that the brain and the heart are two of our most powerful organs. Given the right tools, patience, and support, you or a loved one can move forward on the path to recovery.
All content provided on this blog is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or 911 immediately. Reliance on any information provided by the Saebo website is solely at your own risk.