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frequently asked questions

On this page you'll find lots of videos and Q&As to help you get through this tough time. If you need any support, scroll to the bottom of the page to get in touch.

What caused a loved one's stroke?

can a stroke happen again?

why are they so tired?

why can't they drive anymore?

why can't they remember what just happened?

where can i get help?

other frequently asked questions

is this common?
does it happen to others?

You are not alone! There are over 64,000 stroke survivors in New Zealand, meaning there are hundreds of thousands of teenagers and children out there whose worlds have been turned upside down by a parent's stroke.

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why can't they speak normally?

Strokes can sometimes affect the ability to control speech and communicate with others. A common symptom is called dysphagia, where the muscles in the face, mouth or throat may be affected. Another common symptom is aphasia, a language disorder where the areas of the brain responsible for language production and comprehension are damaged or injured.


Most speech problems do improve, but it is difficult to predict by how much, or how long it will take, as it is different for everyone. Speech difficulties can affect the confidence of your mum or dad, so make sure that they do not feel isolated, and be patient with them. 

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Why do they look the same but act differently after their stroke?

A stroke can make your mum or dad seem more irritable, forgetful or confused, and they might feel angry, anxious and depressed because of what’s happened. That’s because the stroke has physically changed their brain, so even though they seem different from the outside, they are still the same person on the inside.

Just remember: These changes don’t reflect your relationship with your mum or dad, and they tend to improve over time, so be patient with your parent.

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How can I help them after their stroke?

Being attentive and understanding is the most important thing. Your parent is affected physically, emotionally, and mentally, and it’s so important to be aware of those changes and support them while they are recovering.

If you have another parent who has now suddenly become a carer to a stroke survivor, be there for them, as caring for someone can be a hard job.

A stroke in the family can be disorienting, and you may feel

like there is a hole in your life from suddenly not having your parents around. Be strong for your family in this challenging time, as you all work through the effects of the stroke in

your life. 

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Who can I talk to
about this?

0800 What's Up by Barnardos offers free support for children in New Zealand

A stroke is very sudden, and you might feel shocked and upset, or helpless because you cannot make them better. Try talking to a grown-up you trust.


We have teamed up with Barnardos What’s Up who have counsellors you can speak to confidentially and at no 

cost at any time. 


0800 What’s Up is a safe place for tamariki and rangatahi to talk – about anything! It’s New Zealand’s only national children’s helpline where young people aged 5-19 years old can talk to or chat with a trained counsellor.


get free support from our friends at 0800 what's up:

Free call on 0800 942 8787 (Mon-Sun 11am-11pm)

chat online here

or send a message via contact form.

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