Singing to help Aphasia


I had a venous Stroke at the beginning of this year at 38 years old, following a problem during my chemo treatment for cancer.

Despite being told I would not survive the night, and when I did I was expected to be left with severe problems, I’ve somehow managed to make it back to almost normal.

I had to learn how to walk again, and read, write and talk.

One thing that has significantly helped my recovery and my speech, is singing in the shower every morning. It has got to the point people can’t tell I have aphasia.

Start with familiar songs at first, and then try and introduce new songs, which will help with memory. 

Before my stroke I was a travel writer. I have practiced reading and writing every day since February, and I’ve got to the point I recently managed to write 2,000 words in a blog. I couldn’t even write a sentence at the beginning of my recovery.

Two tips for writing and reading are:

Use the Wordscape App to help find the words. For me, this seemed to lock them in my memory.

2. Say words out loud even if you’re on your own. Read your written sentences out loud and you will pick up any mistakes.

When you get tired, speaking, writing or reading etc, don’t push it, just rest. But do practice daily, it will help!

I still make mistakes, and some are hilarious, but I always laugh them off and start again.

Any questions, I am happy to help. ?

Dear Anna

Wow you are going through recovery like the proverbial butter knife. It so good to read about your progress.

It has taken me more than three years to get to the stage when I can sing 5 hymns at Church. My fellow parishioners now want to know how fast they can shut me up.

I am tempted to ask you what an app is, but I will resist. 

I am sure your positive attitude and lack of self pity will have helped you along this long and dusty road.


Great tips, and here is one for you. If you are out walking and you want to say things out loud then just hold your mobile phone to your ear and carry on talking. Everyone will just think you are doing the normal thing of talking someone and will not write you off as an idiot!


Thank you Colin and well done on your achievements with singing too!

Yes, I think a positive attitude is so important and part of the healing process! For me, laughter has kept me sane!

Good luck with your recovery! ?

Thank you Deigh. I will definitely use that tip on my walks! ?

The singing just came slowly over three years. I didnt do anything to promote or relegate it .

I am certain those of us who are positive have far better outcomes.

The smiling thing has, I believe, good medical evidence that it does improve health. Certainly wards off depression. So much of the stroke aftermath is without decent medical support. I know each one of us is different, but there is so much that affects many of us. It is so sad that we get such poor support.

Having complained about the lack of support I must add that only I can get me improved. No one else can do it,its all down to me. I guess what I want is the knowledge to support my own recovery.

What warm weather. Blue skies here. We need rain !


Wow.  Thank you; you are an inspiration.  

Best of luck for the future.

Thank you! X