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Computer Games

Author: Chris DeWald for Stroke

Often faced with “you have reached your insurance limit” or “we believe you have reached your possible learning rehabilitation,” we want to give up. Stroke denial can take a perilous turn in our lives especially if it is garnished by people that surround us with a negative attitude.

Don’t let anyone take your resolve away. I did not believe that I was different and that was for sure a denial. Now whether you are in denial or not, I am here to show you some ways to assist to get that brain motivated. Gee, if you have fun along the way, more power to you.

First, many of you are faced with monetary restrictions. In other words “No Cash”…..You found yourselves here so that is a great start. For me, I found myself with that 6 month waiting period for SSI . No cash flow. However, I found I had skills left to research on the computer for places on the internet that were “free” without any downloading. Just go there and “have fun” and also retrain that brain.

I enjoy the site .

The list include:

Dragger | Counterfeit | Guess the Colors | Rotate | Rotate² | Chinese Checkers | Colored Lines | Masterpieces | Mastercards | Sudoku | Reversi | Mastermind | TwinCol | NumberHunt | MineHunter Crime Scene | Mahjongg Solitaire | What Was There? | The Image Quiz | TriviaNut | Guess the Flag Marsmoney | Memocoly | Checkers | Chess Lettermaze | Anagramania | Guess the Place! | Letterama | SquareWords | What Word? | Spellice What Did I Search For? | The WordHunt Game | SpeedType | SpeedRead

This site has the ability to select languages. There is no sound and that is great for people with brain injuries. Mastercards is similar to an old favorite TV show called “Concentration.” Use Dragger to put pieces together to form a picture. Masterpieces will remind you of therapy and memory. Mastermind is an advance therapy version of masterpiece. Number hunt brings out your math abilities and eye coordination…Hey Gang, Have mouse will travel.

Read more .

Another good site for Brain Exercise is and Lumosity .

Mind Games Good for You!

Author: St. Joseph and St. Mary’s Medical Centers – Carondolet Health System

When it comes to your health, you can be your own best friend or your own worst enemy. Changing “self talk,” (what you say and how you say it) can make or break your plan for self improvement.

A good first step in this mind game is awareness. Try to listen to what you’re saying to yourself. When you notice yourself being negative just say, “Stop”. Pay attention to the number of times in a day that you “Stop” yourself.

The next step is replacing the negative talk with positive talk. Instead of saying “I ate that candy! I’m so stupid! I will never get control of my eating.” Try another approach. “Why did I eat that? Was I bored stressed or what? I can learn from this and make a better choice next time.”

Just replacing “should” with “could” gives you control, and choices. Talk to yourself the same way you would talk with your best friend. Be kind to yourself.

Experts say our self talk can control our emotional state. It can influence your self-esteem, outlook and relationships. It takes time and practice, but we can change the way we talk to ourselves. Concentrate on your strengths. Changing our thoughts leads to changing our behaviors.

Coping Strategies


Mayo Clinic’s website has great information for the aphasia community and their caregivers, please go to their website at:

If you have aphasia, the following tips may help you communicate with others:

Carry a card explaining that you have aphasia.
Carry paper and pencils or pens with you at all times.
Use drawings, diagrams or photos.
Use gestures or point to objects.
Tell or show people what communication style works for you.

Family members and friends can use the following tips when communicating with a person with aphasia:

Simplify your sentences and slow down your pace.
Allow the person time to talk.
Don’t finish sentences or correct errors.
Keep conversations focused on one topic at a time.
Avoid distracting noises.
Keep paper and pencils or pens readily available.
Help the person with aphasia create a book of words, pictures and photos to assist with conversations.
Use drawings or gestures when you aren’t understood.
Involve the person with aphasia in conversations as much as possible.
Check for comprehension or summarize what you’ve discussed.
Talk about the frustrations that the person with aphasia is experiencing.
When conversations break down, decide together whether to continue or return to the topic later.

For the complete list of “skills” or strategies, please Click Here .


Author: Paul Berger

Telephone calls are very hard for people with aphasia and other speech problems from stroke, like me. One way to succeed is to plan ahead-before you pick up the phone, know what you want to say.

One of the courses offered by the aphasia center I attend (the Stroke Comeback Center) helps you relearn how to make a phone call and leave a message.

We memorize some simple scripts. I have mine by the phone so I can refer to it when I start a call. This gives me confidence to call my friends and
business colleagues.

For networking meetings, I use an index card with a brief script describing my small business and goals.

A copy of the telephone script will be posted to my website at: .

Other insights and tips for coping with life and taking control of your recovery after stroke are available on my website at and in my books, “How to Conquer the World With One Hand…And an Attitude,” and “You Can Do It! 105 Thoughts, Feelings & Solutions to Inspire You.”

Author: Medical News Today

An Article found on Medical News Today dated 07 May, 2008

The Stroke Association believes that everyone should have the same holiday choices, so the charity has partnered with Accessible Travel & Leisure to provide tailored holidays for stroke survivors and their families.

Following a stroke, a holiday can be therapeutic, but travelling is a lot more stressful and tiring when your mobility is limited. However Accessible Travel and Leisure are specialists in providing quality holidays for the less mobile. Accessible Travel look after every detail of the holiday from airline reservations to arranging care in the resort, to allow stroke survivors and their families to enjoy their break.

Martin, a stroke survivor who booked a holiday through Accessible Travel, said:

“After my stroke and having difficulty walking, I didn’t think I would cope with travelling abroad again. Accessible Travel dealt with all my concerns and needs and gave me and my family the holiday of my dreams.”

Monika Milne, Account Manager - Commercial Ventures at The Stroke Association said:

“The Stroke Association are delighted to be able to offer stroke survivors and their families tailored holidays. Some stroke survivors may have thought they would never have the chance again, but because Accessible Travel look after every detail of organising a holiday, all stroke survivors have to do is sit back, relax and enjoy their trip”.

Accessible Travel & Leisure will make a 5% donation to The Stroke Association for each completed holiday booked through the partnership. For more information on this please visit The Stroke Association shopping pages or call Accessible Travel & Leisure on 01452 729 739, quoting ‘The Stroke Association’.

To read, print or email the complete original article, please click here .

Communication Alert Card

Author: Linda Wells, MA, CCC-SLP

A speech-language pathologist at Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation has developed a special ID card to make it easier for people with speech impairments to notify others of their condition.

Linda Wells, MA, CCC-SLP created the Communication Impairment Alert Card to help them clearly identify their condition during an emergency or routine activities like shopping or banking.

“The idea for the card came after a patient shared with me his story of being pulled over for a minor traffic violation and how difficult the experience was because of his communication impairment,” Wells said. “He had a brain injury that left him with slurred speech, leading the officer to believe he was intoxicated.”

The card has two components: a pocket/wallet card and a notification that can be attached to the visor in a car. The cards identify the person’s condition and the best method of communication, such as writing, speaking slowly, or asking yes-or-no questions.

“The card should eliminate some of the frustration that occurs when an individual who is slow to answer or sounds slightly different needs to interact with someone for the first time,” Wells said.

The Communication Alert Card has been endorsed by all Michigan law enforcement agencies. Cards can only be obtained through a physician or speech pathologist. For more information, contact Linda Wells at (616) 242-0425 or visit .


Author: Susan Riddle

The author writes: This was a very long story about a very simple little accomplishment. Simple and little to everyone that has never experienced the devastating impacts of aphasia on a person’s life. But for those of you who have seen firsthand what I am talking about, you will understand what a mind-blowing accom-plishment this was for us! And the solution was so simple. If only it had occurred to me sooner!

If even one other person out there is able to take this information and use it to help a loved one accomplish a similar goal, then my rambling and typing have been well worth it!

Click on National Aphasia Association for March Newsletter and scroll to “Breakthrough!”

Author: Sandy Caudell

Universities that teach Speech Pathologists often have University Clinics where the students practice what they are learning. Patients can often get inexpensive therapy at these clinics.

These clinics are in two lists: those that are Members of the Academic Council and those that are not. There is little difference (to patients) between the two, it’s just the way they are listed. The universities listed in the link below all have speech therapy programs so they are very likely to also have clinics where the patients practice under close supervision.

University Speech Therapy Clinics .

Language Translator

Author: Sandy Caudell

Language Translator enables users to improve communication through hundreds of universally understood color pictures. They are not language or dialect dependent and help eliminate language barriers. Categories include basic needs, food, eating out, travel, shelter, work, recreation, and a variety of other common needs.

Click to order .

Author: Ellen Bernstein-Ellis MA, CCC-SLP

Stroke Connection Magazine is a free publication of the American Heart/Stroke Association. Click Here to sign up for this free publication.

To help a loved one with aphasia, your resource basket might include the tips and items below. No single strategy or resource is right for every person, situation or conversation.

Personal portfolio: Create a binder to show off significant mementos like letters, photos of special events or people, newspaper clippings or anything else you want to share. Include a personal record of past achievements and personal milestones. A visual record can make it easier to share memories and inspire activities that are hard to express due to aphasia.

Communication book: Create your own communication book or buy one ready-made. It can be full-sized for home, purse- or pocket-sized for trips. Start with personal, medical and emergency information. Include a list of family and friends and their photos. Use business cards from a favorite restaurant or hairdresser. You can also add pictures, words or photographs grouped by category to help with clothing, food, places, feelings, numbers, days of the week, months and so on. Include information about special hobbies, interests or highlights from the week’s activities.

Maps: Collect maps of your state, the United States and the world. A smaller map of your local area or neighborhood is quite useful. Pointing to a place on a map is usually much easier for a person with aphasia than recalling the name of a specific location.

Picture resources: “The Wordless Travel Book” published by Ten Speed Press is a great resource for everyday pictures organized by categories. Picture dictionaries also help share ideas. The Aphasia Institute offers booklets to make it easier to communicate in specific situations, such as with a doctor or clergy.

Resource Cards: People with aphasia may confuse related groups of words like yes/no, numbers or colors. Make a card with the words “Yes” and “No” written in large letters and paired with a drawing of a happy (YES) and sad (NO) face. Also it’s helpful to have a number card with 1 – 10 on one side and 10, 20, 30, etc on the other. Use crayons or markers to create a color card.

Picture scale: Make a card with a 1 – 10 scale. Put a sad face over the 1, a neutral face over the 5 and a happy face over the 10. This helps a person give more than just a yes/no response. It is a great way to get an opinion, by asking the person with aphasia how much he or she liked or disliked a movie, restaurant, etc., or to get someone to describe how they’re feeling.

Pad & Paper: Writing or drawing offers another avenue when talking is not successful. You can draw or write key words and phrases during discussions to help someone with comprehension problems. For example, instead of giving five choices aloud, list them on a sheet of paper and encourage the person with aphasia to point.

Calendar/personal organizer: Keeping track of appointments, times and details can be particularly difficult for the person with aphasia. Use a calendar updated with appointments and family events whenever you are discussing schedules. Take time to review the daily highlights together so everyone is “on the same page.”

Leave instructions in written form: A person with aphasia is more likely to understand a written list of details or instructions than a long verbal message. Write a note that clearly lists the chores or information you need to convey.

Personalized phone messages. Taking messages can be challenging for a loved one with aphasia, and frustrating for the caregiver who needs the information. Create a phone message pad that offers multiple choices. For example, list “family, friend, medical, business” at the top so the identity of the caller can be easily circled. Leave a script of useful phrases by the phone like “Please talk slowly” or “Please spell your name” or “Please call back and leave a message.”


Control Distractions: Try to keep distractions and background noise to a minimum. Turn off the TV during a conversation. In a restaurant, pick a quiet booth.

Be a partner, not a therapist: Don’t turn conversation into therapy by correcting the person with aphasia or asking for unnecessary repetition. Encourage all communication methods that work for them. Treat the person with aphasia as a competent adult.

Maximize your own communications: Speak slowly and clearly. Try to give one idea at a time and confirm that the person with aphasia understands. Use facial expressions and natural gestures. Use resources mentioned above to help convey your message. For example, if a friend is coming to dinner, show a photo and write their name and the word “dinner” on a calendar.

Educate yourself and others: Take advantage of Web sites that offer education about aphasia and guidelines for communicating. Share these resources with others. Work as a team with a speech therapist to learn which strategies are most appropriate for helping you and your family member communicate.

Pulling a map out of a basket, using gestures or referring to a communication book may seem awkward at first. Keep using these resources to support your efforts to communicate. Perhaps the most important resources of all will be humor, practice and patience.