Since stroke patients need to learn how to bathe, dress, walk, eat, speak clearly, write, and control their body functions, it is claimed that the long process of recovery requires the patient to have a great deal of patience and desire and is more difficult than the trauma of a stroke. Moreover, recovery from a cerebral hemorrhage does not occur overnight and usually happens in stages. Many questions are directed to caregivers by stroke patients and their families and examples of such questions are: How can one help a stroke patient overcome these difficulties in order to make recovery easy for the patient and the patient's family? How long does recovery take after a cerebral hemorrhage? Will function(s) be completely restored? David Bomzon, an acupuncturist and sport therapist with a great deal of experience in treating stroke patients, can provide answers to many questions that are raised by the stroke patient and the patient's family.
What is Yamamoto New Scalp Acupuncture (YNSA)
In 1973, the Japanese physician and scientist, Dr. Toshikatsu Yamamoto, described an independent acupuncture system of the scalp which could alleviate pain of all types in the tissues and organs of the body and help overcome a stroke patient's paralysis and immobility. Since its discovery, YNSA is now administered to many stroke patients worldwide as part of their rehabilitation. Currently, YNSA is the most widely and frequently used form of acupuncture for treating stroke patients suffering from pain and paralysis and is gaining increasing clinical significance. YNSA is also called neuro-acupuncture because of its therapeutic benefit in patients with a neurologic disorder. YNSA can be applied alone or in conjunction with physiotherapy and occupational therapy. Another advantage of YNSA is that only a few acupuncture points are required to be stimulated on the skull in order to result in therapeutically beneficial effects.
During rehabilitation, most stroke patients desire to return to their previous state and neglect their previous daily interactions. Many therapists recommend that stroke patients involve themselves in those activities that they enjoyed before the cerebral hemorrhage and not to spend all the time in therapy. In addition it is important that stroke patients have physical and mental rest in order to recharge their batteries. In addition, stroke patients should be mentally stimulated through social intercourse with friends because the latter improves the patient's mood. Despite the high motivation of stroke patients, some stroke patients appear to lack desire and are lazy. One also needs to remember that some stroke patients have lost some of the cognitive abilities, such as their ability to concentrate and as a result, they become depressed and withdrawn. For such patients, it is important to provide support and seek activities which the patients enjoyed before the cerebral hemorrhage. For example, if the patient enjoyed cooking, the therapist should give them the opportunity to try to cook. If the patient enjoyed reading, the therapist should encourage them to read. At the same time, patients should also be encouraged to interact with their friends. Scientific explanations underlie these therapeutically beneficial
Brain stimulation enables the development of alternate neural pathways so that a particular activity can be relearnt and opens the door for complete restoration.
Performing activities that were liked before the cerebral hemorrhage stimulates the release of endorphins which in turn improves the patient's mood.
Positive reinforcement intensifies vigor and desire, both of which significantly improve the patient's recovery and rehabilitation.
Cognitive and physiological stimulation facilitates recovery and rehabilitation.
How does YNSA help the stroke patient?
When YNSA is applied to a patient, the therapeutic benefits are immediate and include:
Improves the quality of life and mood of patients
Encourages patients to do activities that they enjoyed before the cerebral hemorrhage