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Happy Talk at Stockton stroke group
5:54pm Wednesday 25th September 2013 in News
A CASH-strapped group which provides support to stroke survivors and their spouses is appealing for more people to use the lifeline.
Eileen Marshall was just brushing her teeth when her world turned upside down three years ago. She lost all feeling in her mouth and was suddenly unable to speak.
Although the stroke only temporarily robbed her of her taste buds and her speech, she said the physical and emotional effects had been long-lasting.
“You feel inferior in society as you can’t express yourself,” explained the 69-year-old from Billingham who is a regular at the weekly Happy Talk sessions held at Sundell Court in Oxbridge, Stockton. As well as calling for more members and volunteers the self-funded group is also looking for grants to help cover transport costs and day trips.
“I can’t stand it when people speak down to me like I’m stupid," she added. "You can see the words in your head, but sometimes they just don’t come out, so some people think you are a drunk. That is what is so good about coming here. It gives you confidence and helps you to communicate with different people.”
According to the national Stroke Association, an estimated 150,000 people in the UK have a stroke. Most people affected are over 65, but anyone can be affected including children and even babies.
A stoke happens when the blood supply to part of the brain is cut off and brain cells are damaged or die.
Ron Harbron, who helps run the Wednesday weekly get-togethers from noon to 3.30pm, said: “Suffering a stroke can be traumatic and our group offers sympathetic understanding, we help to stimulate speech, social activities with lots of good humour and quizzes, games, conversation and lots of fun.”
For information call Ron Harbron on 0777-5335359 or email email@example.com.
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