The 9 Pillars of Stroke Recovery

Home Stroke Recovery The 9 Pillars of Stroke Recovery
A stroke coach will help to maximize YOUR stroke recovery. Our survivor team has “walked the walk” – WE CAN HELP YOU!

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Pillar 1 – Survivor Optimism and Engagement

An optimistic and engaged survivor will experience an improved recovery outcome, given the deficits. Taming depression is a prerequisite for successful rehabilitation.

Pillar 2 – Traditional Therapy

Physical, occupational, speech, aqua and psychological therapy make up the BIG 5 traditional therapy approaches. Insist on a neuro trained and experienced PT, and OT as part of your recovery team. When reimbursed traditional therapy terminates IS NOT the time to stop your stroke recovery efforts. KEEP GOING! It is likely that additional recovery functionality can be achieved with the following strategies.


Committing to a Brain & Heart Heathy Lifestyle increases your chances of achieving an improved recovery. It also reduces your likelihood of suffering a second stroke. A healthy lifestyle is composed of physical fitness activity, intellectual stimulation, maintaining a healthy diet, focusing alcoholic consumption on red wine, and eliminating smoking.

Pillar 4 – Clinical Research Participation

This a chance for the motivated and engaged survivor to get the benefit of state-of-the-art medical treatment. Results can be very helpful! Managing expectations, being in the developmental stage, there is no guarantee that clinical research participation will be helpful for an individual. That said – nothing tried, nothing gained!

Pillar 5 – Integrative  or Alternative Therapy

These techniques are known by several names such as alternative, integrative, functional, and holistic medicine and are out of the traditional medicine mainstream. Though traditional medical practitioners sometimes shun them for lack of evidence-based research, many of these techniques have proven to be surprisingly effective and worthy of consideration for many survivors.

Pillar 6 – Development of Coping Strategies

Often in stroke recovery survivors will find that what was in the past is not in the future. However, there are many ways to skin a cat – so to speak. Open your mind to creativity, flexibility and learning new ways to accomplish the task at hand.

Pillar 7 – Be Actively Inquisitive

There is a brave new world out there that is constantly changing and evolving. With these changes, new or improved technologies, and evolutionary thinking come many potential opportunities to improve your recovery many years after a stroke.


The caregiver partner has a place at the table! Successful recovery is greatly enhanced by the constructive actions of the caregiver partner. Remember the importance of fulfilling your own needs, while being a successful caregiver. It is important to keep in mind the stroke’s impact on the caregiver’s life.

Pillar 9 – Laughter

More giggles and guffaws are just what the doctor ordered” according to the esteemed Mayo Clinic, “data is mounting about the positive things laughter can do”. These include such positive things as relieving stress and soothing tension, pain relief, improving immune systems, and perhaps most importantly – increasing survivor and caregiver personal satisfaction and happiness.

STROKE VICTOR – How to Go from Stroke Victim to Stroke Victor
“Bob Mandell brings a new and refreshing focus on recovery after a stroke. He shows how he was able to take control of his recovery after a devastating stroke and mixes humor, determination and a positive attitude in this inspiring book.”
Dr. Justin C. McArthur - Director, Department of Neurology - Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine