Anxiety & Ballance

Hi Everyone I've have a question for u, I had my stroke 9 months ago, I'm 51 and I lost my speech and had issues with my right hand.  I feel like I've progressed well, I've regained my speech and has been walking about 10 miles per week.  Originally I had an issue with my Ballance and had anxiety, I felt very unsteady but I feel like I've been a lot better over the last few months until last week!! I was out for a walk and suddenly I felt unbalanced again out of the blue and then again the next couple of days until I feel now like I felt a few months ago.  The only thing that's changed in my life was I started back to work last Monday for a morning and I was really anxious about that and my daughter leaves for Uni next week which is also an extremely emotional event so my question is has anyone experienced anxiety affecting their Ballance? I also know that I experienced major fatigue after I finished working on my laptop for 4hrs at work on Monday! Debbie

Hi - what you are saying is normal for me as well - it is difficult having to go back to work and live with the anxiety of what has happened to you - trying to also add in to that family life is a big deal.  It’s different for everyone when a child goes to uni and combined with everything else you will feel the strain.  I lost use of my rhs had to learn to walk and use my hand and arm again that was 3.5 years ago when I am at work and am having a stressful time or encounter I feel the numbness come from my neck and down my arm - thats my signal that I need to breath and calm down ! I am an avid walker - some days it’s great and on others I feel like I am drunk and for someone who is teetotal that is weird but I just slow down a little. You are very early days - take care of yourself and as someone once said to me you need to stop and smell the roses rather than walk past and ignore them !

Thank you so much for your reply it has made me feel so much better to know I'm not going mad and that anxiety can affect your balance as I thought perhaps I was going backwards in my recovery and my usual thought came up 'am I going to have another stroke' which I have been trying hard to work through those feelings and not think every little change in my health means it's going to happen again!  Can I ask, you mentioned you mentioned it's been a few years since your stroke, does the anxiety of having another one get less?

The feeling of never having another one has unfortunately not gone away I will say given time it does get easier to live with.  I try to look at things in a positive light and am thankful of the things I can do and the fact that I am still here.  I was 53 when my stroke happened and going back to work was and still is a challenge and combined with the worry and anxiety family life throws at you it is not always easy to take time for yourself.

 It is good to have a read of people’s challenges and advice on this forum sometimes they may not be relevant to you but it is comforting to know there are others who do understand how you are feeling and can give some reassurance or guidance. 

Dear Debbie

i am so impressed with your progress. You walk, talk and now even try to get back to employment.

of course you will regress about now. Working is an enormous step. Child going to uni is an event of magnitude. I clearly remember my child going. All the Dads were crying (yes the Dads).

and nine months is early for your recovery trail. Our brains still work away for about two years. Always trying to establish the best way to work around the stroke damage.

I hope that you can moderate your employment. And please just take it easy until your daughter has settled. Give yourself a chance to cope.

your brain was shocked by a stroke, so it's likely that it will give you anxiety. Yes, anxiety will worsen your balance. When you have settled you could try wearing a magnetic bracelet. And you could try some gentle yoga. I did "seated" yoga and I learnt so much. My core is miles off centre, and I didn't grasp this concept. But yes, my poor balance comes from my off centre core.

emotionality is one of the many things a stroke can give us. I still can't go to a funeral six years on. But I can watch Tv without the emotions going mad. Emotionality and anxiety are easy to confuse. 
I learnt that good sleep was essential. I worked at sleep for months before I started to sleep properly. Poor sleep equals extra anxiety etc.

keep smiling

keep positive

lots of us are out here admiring your progress


Thank you so much for your reply Colin it's much appreciated!  I sometimes think about how I would have felt about our daughter leaving home and going to Uni before the stroke and I know I would have been really emotional and I would have been ok with that, but I some how feel it makes me think I'm going backwards in my recovery because I feel so emotional and particularly because it's affected my ballace but it's good to know that once she's settled in and I feel less anxious about going back to work then hopefully I will get my confidence back with my ballance and walking as ive worked so hard to get to this point.  I am really interested in the chair yoga you mentioned, is there any particular websites/YouTube videos you could recommend and I could give it a go at home? Thanks Debbie

Many thanks for your reply and sharing your story it has made me realise that I have been so focused on trying to do everything at once that when I've had a stumble in my recovery that it's ok, I'm not going backwards I just have to calm down, don't panic and take my time x

I have found everything hard to cope with, but it gets easier as the time goes by. I couldn't go to work. I can just manage a voluntary job that I do from home, about 5 hours a month. And I have to be rested and calmn for the work.

the stress of daughter to uni will take a huge chunk of your mental energy. Be prepared for the downturn, but prepare for your come back !

seated yoga is a recognised term. Actually my sessions were not described like that, it was sessions for recovery for those with serious illness including gentle yoga. I found the yoga content very useful. The sessions were near Colchester by a marvellous tutor. She now does a lot for wounded soldiers. Colchester is a garrison town.

I found the sessions via my church. This was all before covid.

the sessions used the church hall, then the village hall.

I think you could try searching for seated yoga in your area as this is the recognised terminology. Or seated yoga online.

do try to take things slowly. Your brain is still madly trying to rewire itself and will react badly if it overheats.

you should perhaps be drinking plenty of water. Brain needs the extra water but can't ask for it. I hated the drinking of extra water. 

Best wishes