Wakefield stroke survivor John Fox, 76, is one of the hundreds of people living with communication difficulties after a stroke.
John had a stroke in July 2015, while preparing to drive to Belgium. His stroke affected his memory, confidence and left him with aphasia, a communication disability.
John said: “I’ve always been very confident, and my career involved training people in sales. However my stroke knocked my confidence. It can be very frustrating when I can’t find the words. I’m also reluctant to go shopping any more, as I struggle to grasp the numbers when I’m at the till.”
After leaving hospital, John was supported by the Stroke Association and now attends the charity’s monthly aphasia cafe and local stroke support group. He has also recently become a stroke ambassador for the charity, delivering presentations to organisations around Wakefield to raise awareness of stroke.
John added: “I look forward to the regular coffee mornings. They’ve really help me because I’m with people with similar circumstances. Everyone understands what I’ve been through. It’s giving me back my confidence.”
The Stroke Association’s Lost for Words campaign aims to raise awareness of the challenges stroke survivors with communication difficulties can face, and help and support available.
Stacey Taylor, Stroke Support Coordinator at the Stroke Association, said: “After a stroke, around one in three people like John have difficulty communicating, which can be both terrifying and isolating. Since John has been attending the monthly aphasia cafe and stroke support group, he’s gone from strength to strength; his confidence and speech is continuing to improve. I’m so proud of his recovery.”
More than 350,000 people in the UK have aphasia, a communication disability which can be caused by stroke. The Stroke Association is urging people to show their support for stroke survivors who are lost for words and make a donation. For more information, visit www.stroke.org.uk/lostforwords.
A stroke is a brain attack which happens when the blood supply to the brain is cut off, caused by a clot or bleeding in the brain. There are around 152,000 strokes in the UK every year and it is one of the largest causes of disability. There are over 1.2 million people in the UK living with the effects of stroke.
Stroke Association is a charity. We believe in life after stroke and together we can conquer stroke. We work directly with stroke survivors and their families and carers, with health and social care professionals and with scientists and researchers. We campaign to improve stroke care and support people to make the best recovery they can. We fund research to develop new treatments and ways of preventing stroke. The Stroke Helpline (0303 303 3100) provides information and support on stroke. More information can be found at www.stroke.org.uk