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Sunday, February 28, 2010

Presentation Update

Our workshop titled, Who's Doing the Thinking; Who's Doing the Talking? , in Windsor Canada on 5/13/10 is being organized by Helga Schollenberger and will be held at the University of Windsor.  Please contact Helga at 519-973-4411x3370 or hschollenberger@hdgh.org for information or to register.  This full day workshop will cover topics including: innovative aphasia treatment; effective and affordable software; a visual definition of aphasia;effective use of groups; peer coaching and tutoring; evidence-based aphasia treatment; techniques to improve cognitive underpinnings; ways to minimize imitation and external cueing in treatment in order to facilitate the client's independent conversational skills; as well as numerous unique treatment techniques and activities. Workshop activities include: proven applications of aphasia telerehab and real-time video conferencing treatment demonstrations and Q&A with Aphasia Solutions Network clients and groups. 
I want to thank the Kentucky Speech-Language-Hearing-Association for inviting me to present this week.  I commend convention co-chairs Margaret Cain-Miracle, Rebecca S. Goss and their staff for a wonderfully organized and executed conference.  I had the opportunity to attend a session on improving aphasia testing given by Dr. Robert Marshall.  We have all benefited from Dr. Marshall's significant contributions to aphasia rehabilitation.  We added several new members to the Aphasia Solutions Network during the convention. 
Upcoming presentations and workshops for Bill Connors:
Pittsburgh Area Brain Injury Alliance, March 1, 2010,  7:00pm-9:00pm est, Pittsburgh, PA USA
Ohio Speech-Language-Hearing-Association Convention, March 13, 2010, 8:45 am-12:00 pm est, Columbus, OH USA
Maryland Speech-Language-Hearing-Association Convention, March 26, 2010, 9:0 am-3:00 pm est, Towson, MD USA
Aphasia Consumer Workshop,April 17, 2010, 9:00 am -- 12:00 am est, ASN home office, Pittsburgh, PA USA
Windsor Essex County Communication Link, May 13, 2010, 8:30 am- 4:15pm est, Windsor, Ontario USA
To discuss offering a workshop in your locale, contact Bill Connors at 724.494.2534 or bill@aphasiatoolbox.com .
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Saturday, February 27, 2010

Playing along with the Mozart effect

If you want music to sharpen your senses, boost your ability to focus and perhaps even improve your memory, you need to be a participant, not just a listener.

  (Ricardo DeAratanha / Los Angeles Times)


Five months after we are conceived, music begins to capture our attention and wire our brains for a lifetime of aural experience. At the other end of life, musical memories can be imprinted on the brain so indelibly that they can be retrieved, perfectly intact, from the depths of a mind ravaged by Alzheimer's disease.

In between, music can puncture stress, dissipate anger and comfort us in sadness.

As if all that weren't enough, for years parents have been seduced by even loftier promises from an industry hawking the recorded music of Mozart and other classical composers as a means to ensure brilliant babies.

But for all its beauty, power and capacity to move, researchers have concluded that music is little more than ear candy for the brain if it is consumed only passively. If you want music to sharpen your senses, boost your ability to focus and perhaps even improve your memory, the latest word from science is you'll need more than hype and a loaded iPod.

You gotta get in there and play. Or sing, bang or pluck.

"The Mozart effect? That's just crap," says Glenn Schellenberg, a psychologist at the University of Toronto who conducts research on the effect of music and musical instruction.

Even the author of the 1993 study that set off the commercial frenzy says her group's findings — from an experiment that had college students, not babies, listen to Mozart — were "grossly misapplied and over-exaggerated." Psychologist Frances Rauscher, along with the rest of the field studying music's effects on the brain, has long since moved on to explore the effect of active musical instruction on cognitive performance.

The upshot of their work is clear: Learning to make music changes the brain and boosts broad academic performance. Findings across the board suggest that, even for a kid who will not grow up to be a Wynton Marsalis or a Joshua Bell, spending money and time on music lessons and practice is a solid investment in mental fitness.

MORE
Playing along with the Mozart effectSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Friday, February 26, 2010

Don't miss the "Spelling Bee" this Sunday!

Kean University Department of Theater and
Institute for Adults Living with Communication Disabilities
present a benefit performance of
the Tony Award winning musical
 
"The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee"
 
This Sunday!  February 28
2:00 P.M.
Tickets: $25

Tickets can be purchased by phone (908-737-7469) or at the box office the day of the show.
Be sure to request "Benefit Tickets."

Can't attend, but still want to help out?  You may make a contribution to the Institute.

For more details about the performance, or how to make a contribution, open the attachment.
 
Please note:  Content of the performance may not be appropriate for children under 14.
 
--
Wendy Greenspan, MA, CCC-SLP
Institute for Adults Living with Communication Disabilities
Institute Coordinator
Kean University
Department of Communication Disorders and Deafness
1000 Morris Avenue
Union, New Jersey 07083
ph:  908-737-5811
fax:  908-737-5805
Don't miss the "Spelling Bee" this Sunday!SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

The Saint Vincents - International Aphasia Movement

scheduled for tomorrow, Saturday, February 27, 2010 will be canceled due the weather conditions.
 
We feel that the safety conditions are so hazardous that our participants may encounter dangerous conditions in traveling to our Group.
 
We will reschedule this group at a different time.
 
Any questions or comments please call:
Harvey Alter
212-217-2610
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Thursday, February 25, 2010

How to get Aphasia Treatment?

Written by admin on Thursday, February 25, 2010 3:57
Aphasia is the most serious language disorders of all. It is caused due to damage of language center of the brain. But fortunately it has various therapies and treatments to treat this particular language disorders.

How to get Aphasia Treatment?
  • First you must understand what type of aphasia the person has. Example, a person with Wernicke’s aphasia, can speak a lot but unable to understand other’s words. Whereas in case of Broca’s aphasia, a person can understand words, but can speak out only few words with lot of effort.
  • Aphasia must be treated as soon as it is diagnosed. This makes a lot of difference in one’s recovery and getting back to his/her normal self.
  • Before deciding for a therapy, you must consider the amount of brain damge, the age and the health condition of the patient.
  • Find out with pathologist, neurologist who treat aphasia patients about what kind of therapy one must go through, what additional exercises that are to be done with the therapies etc. Also check if they have the latest technology included in their therapy sessions.
  • Try to involve the whole family in the treatment of an aphasia patient. In some of the training,relatives and family members are needed to get back the patient in his family circle. But you need to speak and treat the patient like human being. Try to speak with them in simple language and clearly. You must also be very patient with an aphasia patient. It can take a lot of time to treat, may be for 2 years.
Related posts:
How to get Aphasia Treatment?SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Communicating With Stroke Survivors: What Matters Most?

March, 2010, Vol. 10, Issue 03 
By Ann Catlin, LMT, NCTMB, OTR
It is likely that at some point, someone you know - a grandparent, parent, sibling, friend, neighbor or client - will suffer a stroke. It is one leading cause of long-term disability in the United States. 
I've met literally hundreds of stroke survivors while working as an occupational therapist in rehabilitation programs, and my grandfather suffered a stroke when I was a child. Even though I've had all this experience, the one thing that stands out as challenging, yet critically important, is communication. The topic of stroke, or cerebral vascular accident, is very complex, and people who suffer a stroke commonly experience physical, behavioral and communication effects.
The focus of this article is communication, so it's important to have a basic understanding of what happens during a stroke that leads to serious communication impairment. The term stroke refers to a situation that occurs when blood flow to the brain cells is interrupted. There are basically two types of stroke. An ischemic stroke is when an artery becomes blocked by a blood clot, depriving cells of oxygen. About 83 percent of strokes are ischemic. Hemorrhagic stroke is when there is actual bleeding from the arteries into the brain tissue, accounting for about 17 percent of all strokes. The resulting functional impairment or disability following a stroke depends on the location of the vascular lesion in the brain. Speech and language is a function primarily of the left hemisphere of the brain, so when the stroke occurs in the left hemisphere, communication - the ability to speak, understand, read and write - will possibly be affected. The extent is determined by the severity of the damage to the brain.
This brings me to the point I really want to make. What does the stroke survivor experiencing communication disorders need from us? I know what my own observations tell me, but I wanted to see what others say about it so I set off to find out. In the process, I found a jewel of an evidence-based report called "The Psychosocial Spiritual Experience of Elderly Recovering from Stroke." The elders recalled that the early period following the stroke was terrifying. Connection with others was important in recovery, and communication difficulties led to feelings of isolation. They stressed that the work of recovery requires a great deal of physical and psychological effort, and that hope and inner strength were important. 
Aphasia is one common communication disorder associated with stroke. It affects the ability to use or comprehend words. It might cause difficulty:
  • Understanding words
  • Finding the word to express a thought
  • Understanding grammatical sentences
  • Reading or writing words or sentences
Jill Bolte Taylor, PhD, was a 37-year-old neurologist when she suffered a massive stroke. Her book, My Stroke of Insight, shines a light on what she needed most during her recovery. On the topic of communication and connection with others, Jill has this to say: "I needed people to love me - not for the person I had been, but for who I might now become. I needed those around me to be encouraging. I needed to know I still had value. Focus on my ability, not my disability. I needed people to come close and not be afraid of me. I desperately needed their kindness. I needed to be touched - stroke my arm, hold my hand or gently wipe my face if I'm drooling. I know it can be very uncomfortable for a healthy person to try to communicate with someone who has had a stroke, but I needed my visitors to bring me their positive energy. Since conversation was obviously out of the question, I appreciated when people came in just for a few minutes, took my hands in theirs, and shared softly and slowly how they were doing, what they were thinking and how they believed in my ability to recover."
What people who survive strokes may need most from us is not found in any kind of therapeutic technique or approach. It's found in our ability to show up and be real in our caring. It's found in the simple gift of touch and heart-to-heart connection. It's found in acknowledging that the stroke survivor is a person whose life has been altered, but the individual inside the body remains the same. It's found in shared hope. I'll leave you with this poignant story called "Poor Thing" by Judith A. Russo, who cared for her husband following his stroke.
"Did you hear that Joe had a stroke?" asks Person A.
"Oh yes, poor thing!" says Person B.
"He was such a good person and a good worker," says A.
"Yes, too bad, isn't it?"
My husband had a stroke in February 2000, which left him with Broca's aphasia. Do you know what Broca's aphasia is? What you need to know is that he is not a "poor thing." And he still is, not was, a good person. He is a survivor who is living a richer life now than he was before. He was in the rat race of existence, going round and round with the dizzying effects of a non-stop merry-go-round. Now, he has time to smell the lilacs, watch the egret fish for its dinner and marvel as his granddaughter grows inch by inch. How poor can that be?
He is, perhaps, disabled, but the same person he was before the stroke. Most folks become so intimidated with the affliction "stroke" that they forget there is a real person living in that body, a person who thinks, hurts, laughs and cries just like you.
The National Aphasia Association offers these tips on communicating with a person who has aphasia:
  • Decrease background noise such as television, radio or other people) as much as possible.
  • Keep communication simple but adult. Don't talk down to the person with aphasia.
  • You don't need to speak louder than normal, but do emphasize key words.
  • Encourage and use other modes of communication (writing, drawing, yes/no responses, choices, gestures, eye contact, facial expressions) in addition to speech.
  • Give them time to talk and let them have a reasonable amount of time to respond. Avoid speaking for the person with aphasia, except when necessary, and ask permission before doing so.
The rhetoric continues, "What do you say to him?" asks Person A.
"I don't know," replies Person B.
"Well, I won't bother him now, or call or visit. After all, he's probably busy, and I don't know how much he understands anyway."
"I agree," says B. "He probably wouldn't know who we are, and we don't want to embarrass him."
By the way, Broca's aphasia is the inability to communicate effectively by speech. What is the therapy for people with aphasia? Talking to the survivor and encouraging them to respond. You might have to wait for two or three awkward moments for them to think about what to say. In the meantime, you may see the egret fish for its catch of the day. You may see the lush brown velvet cat-o'-nine tails waving in the wind, or the rabbits playfully goading each other on the lawn, or the huge turtle crawling along the banks of the pond with a goldfish in its jaws. Come at dusk and perchance you will see the deer as they come to the pond to drink. You will go away richer for the visit because you will have escaped the runaway merry-go-around, if only for a few moments. You will feel rich and will have blessed the heart of the "poor one who was such a good person."
When a stroke happens to a relative, friend or co-worker, please do not put them into an isolation they never asked for. Reach out and touch someone today.
Resources
  1. American Stroke Association.
  2. Joanna Briggs Institute. The Psychosocial Spiritual Experience of Elderly Recovering from Stroke. Best Practice 2009;13(6).
  3. Bolte Taylor J. My Stroke of Insight. New York: Viking Publishing, 2006.
  4. Russo JA. Poor Thing. Excerpted from the Readers Room department of Stroke Connection Magazine, January/February 2002.
  5. National Aphasia Association.
Communicating With Stroke Survivors: What Matters Most?SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Co-Survivors are urged to attend


SAINT VINCENT'S APHASIA GROUP
and the
INTERNATIONAL APHASIA MOVEMENT

The meeting of the Saint Vincent's Rehabilitation Department Aphasia Speech Therapy Clinic will take place this
 Saturday, February 27, 2010
from 10 AM to 2 PM
in the Cafeteria
Complimentary Coffee upon arrival and Lunch will be served
Co-Survivors are urged to attend.
The address of Saint Vincent's is 171 West 12th Street off of 7th Avenue
This session consists of  small group individual therapy
            
           FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT:
           Harvey Alter
           International Aphasia Movement
           212-217-2610
Co-Survivors are urged to attendSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Time Management and Memory

Dr Shock
February 23, 2010
Getting Thing Done, GTD
Time management is often necessary to complete tasks in a give period or sequence. For this you have to weigh the importance of your tasks, which is the most important or urgent. You’ll mostly use some way to organize and remind your tasks (to-do lists), in order to reduce the cognitive load by having to think about your tasks all the time. Another important topic is dividing your time and estimating the time needed to complete tasks. I mostly use “Getting Things Done” or GTD for time management, follow the link for a post on this blog about GTD.
Memory obviously plays an important part in time management. You need your prospective memory to remember something later to be done, task to be done in the future at the right time and place. This is were your prospective memory comes in. You need your retrospective memory to remember what you have done and what has to be done next and when.
In a recent publication results were published from questionnaires on time management and both types of memory by 425 undergraduates between the age 19-59 years.
Those who had better prospective and retrospective memory also were more likely to set goals and priorities and they also preferred an organized approach to projects. They also reported to be more in control of their time compared to those scoring less on both memory scales. Interestingly the use of making to do lists, scheduling activities and avoiding interruptions did not correlate with memory.
Thus, it is not clear whether individuals who think they have good memories do so because they use these time management strategies or those with good memories don’t use these time management strategies because they don’t think they need them. Further research needs to investigate the role of time management mechanics on these memory processes.
Bad news for those developing software and other things to help with time management. This is not bad news for those who have less information active in memory because those with weaker memory may have less distraction and stress and they may reach goals more efficiently than those who have more information active in their mind.
But never forget, these are correlations and correlations are not causations.

Why is this important?

This kind of research can help to find out who could benefit from time management training. Clearly time management and it’s solutions is not one size fits all. Individual differences are important to be considered in how to use time management, if necessary at all. And which solution does work for this individual. Do you need time management and how do you incorporate it in your work, please let me know in the comments.
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West Side Aphasia Group - aphasianyc.org

Hi Everyone,

Starting this week, we will be meeting twice a month, the second & fourth Wednesday of each month.

Here is the schedule through June.
West Side Aphasia Group
Wednesday Evenings, 6:45 PM - 8:15 PM
 
MANHATTAN
Before attending either call or email by Tuesday
 

February 24, March 10, 24,  April 7, 21, May 12, 26, June 9, 23

We hope you can join us this Wednesday, 6:45 - 8:15pm at our home:
http://aphasianyc.org/

Light refreshments will be served.

PLEASE RSVP by Tuesday evening, either by phone or email. Thank you so much!

Helen & Lewis

Helen Rubinstein
West Side Aphasia Group
http://aphasianyc.org/
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Music therapy rewires the brains of people unable to speak

 February 23, 2010 by Lin Edwards Brain
(PhysOrg.com) -- Scientists are for the first time studying a speech therapy technique called Melodic Intonation Therapy to find out what happens in patients’ brains. The therapy is used to teach people who have aphasia (inability to speak) after suffering a stroke to speak, and makes use of the fact that many people who cannot talk can still sing.
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When patients suffer a on the left hemisphere of the brain it affects their ability to speak, but melodic intonation therapy attempts to tap into the right side of the brain if it is undamaged. Music affects many parts of the brain in both hemispheres, and it influences motor skills, emotions and hearing. If the affected person is taught to sing sentences, they can then learn to speak them.
Harvard University neurologist Professor Gottfried Schlaug is leading to try to find out why the technique works for many people even when other forms of speech therapy have failed. In the study he took images of the brains of patients before the therapy and again afterwards, and discovered there are structural and functional changes in the right side of the brain, with the patients essentially “rewiring” their brains as they learn to use the singing center in the right instead of the speech center in the left.
Many patients who have not been able to speak, in some cases for many years, and who have tried other speech therapies with no success, have learned to speak after a few dozen sessions of melodic intonation therapy. Even after a single session most stroke victims can learn to say a simple phrase by combining a note in the melody with each syllable, and even one phrase can make them less dependent and frustrated.
Schlaug spoke about the technique at the American Association for the Advancement of Science’s annual meeting in San Diego earlier this week. He said he thought the reason the therapy is not used more widely is at least in part because many people are embarrassed when asked to sing, and some therapists may feel uncomfortable singing to their patients. Some patients, especially males, can also struggle with embarrassment. Once they start, Schlaug said, they settle in and the therapy is simple. His next goal is to teach the technique to care givers.
Music therapy rewires the brains of people unable to speakSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Monday, February 22, 2010

THE INTERNATIONAL APHASIA MOVEMENT RESEARCH NEWS

Recruitment of Participants

Volunteers are needed for a research study, conducted through St. John’s University, on conversational styles of healthy elderly adults and those with a diagnosis of mild stage dementia of the Alzheimer’s type, and other neurogenic communication disorders.

The study involves a brief (30 minute) speech and language interview with the principal investigator and requires no preparation.   

The study will be conducted at a time and place convenient to the participant (for example in his or her day program, home or at the laboratory of Dr. Carozza, located at St.John’s University, 300 Howard Ave., Staten Island NY 10301.

Interested individuals are urged to contact Dr. Linda Carozza at (718) 390-4417
THE INTERNATIONAL APHASIA MOVEMENT RESEARCH NEWSSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Aphasia Solutions Network - Online Small Group Program

2/21/2010 Newsletter
Aphasia Solutions Network - Online Small Group Program
In our last newsletter, we discussed the history and benefits of traditional aphasia groups.  Roberta Elman, in her seminal book on aphasia groups, suggested improvement in social adjustment, enhanced quality of life, and ongoing growth in communication skills as desirable outcomes for participation in aphasia groups (Elman, 2007). We salute all those whose efforts provide opportunities for people with aphasia (PWA) and their caregivers take advantage of group activities.
In his best-selling book, Thomas Friedman seems to use the metaphor, "The World is Flat" to support his notion that technology connectedness has leveled the global playing field providing more equal opportunity for competitors around the world (Friedman, 2005).  Our goal at Aphasia Solutions Network(ASN) is to flatten the world of aphasia. Our mission is to find creative solutions and tools to give PWA, all over the world, equal opportunity to continue on their recovery pathways.  Albert Einstein's quote, "To raise new questions, new possibilities, to regard old problems from a new angle, requires creative imagination and marks real advance in science." reflects well our view.

Starting in 2009, the staff of ASN and www.aphasiatoolbox.com decided it was time to find the best way to take advantage of innovative technology and multidisciplinary fields of study to translate aphasia group research into affordable, accessible and effective tools for PWA traveling the pathway of recovery.  The staff, incorporating continuous quality improvement standards, developed groups that encompassed: social support, peer tutoring and coaching, public speaking, language drills, treatment carryover, and vocabulary recovery and development.  By using commercial videoconferencing services (www.oovoo.com; www.skype.com ), PWA can now participate in small, interactive groups from the comfort of their own homes, treatment clinics, or rehabilitation facilities.  There is no extra charge for the video conferencing service and no need for expensive equipment.  We have combined videoconferencing with talented group leaders including PWA, effective techniques drawn from a variety of fields of study, and innovative technological tools. In doing this, ASN has taken a significant step forward by setting new standards for affordable, smart, meaningful and aggressive therapy options for people with aphasia on their paths to recovery.  

Visit http://aphasiatoolbox.earthwebplace.com/calendar.htm to view a calendar of the Aphasia Solutions Network's online, small groups.
Here are the details for each ASN online group:
Introduction to Our Software Group: 
Group Leader-Adam Miller, PWA, BS, Computer Science 
Group Goals:
To introduce in clear and simple terms the use of software
                        applications such as video web-cam; chat; Google apps and others 
To introduce in clear and simple terms the use of www.aphasiatoolbox.com software programs (The Aphasia Sight Reader; Verbal Working Memory and Attention Training for Aphasia)
To simplify the use of these applications 
To assist the participant in the effective use of these applications for aphasia therapy and for unlimited practice 
To assist the participants by troubleshooting any problems with the use of these applications
To provide clear written instructions and assistance for using the applications
To provide support and refresher instruction in use of the applications
To facilitate screen literacy
To make computer and internet use fun
Cost/availability:
Free to members of the Aphasia Solutions Community; $25.00 for non-
members - 2/6 seats available

Men's Aphasia Bootcamp
Group Leader-Bill Connors, CCC, SLP
Group Goals:
            To provide peer collaborative practice and drills 
To emphasize turn taking and listening skills
To facilitate participation and social communication engagement
To provide social support and networking
To practice treatment skills gained in individual sessions
To have fun
Cost/availability:
$15.00 for members of the Aphasia Solutions Community; $25.00 for non-
members - 1/6 seats available; this is a group for men

Aphasia Bootcamp
Group Leader-Bill Connors, CCC, SLP
Group Goals:
To provide peer collaborative practice and drills 
To emphasize turn taking and listening skills
To facilitate participations and social communication engagement
To provide social support and networking
To practice treatment skills gained in individual sessions
To incorporate dedicated software into practice
To have fun
Cost/availability:
$15.00 for members of the Aphasia Solutions Community; $25.00 for non-
members - 2/6 seats available

Public Speaking and Leadership Training for People with Aphasia
Group Leader-Paul Berger, PWA, M.A., M.B.A, www.StrokeSurvivor.com
Group Goals:
To provide to people with aphasia practice in preparing and delivering
            speeches adapted from the Toastmasters [http://www.toastmasters.org/] model

To emphasize turn taking, engagement and listening skills
To provide to people with aphasia practice in effective impromptu
            speaking
To provide social support and networking
To practice treatment skills gained in individual sessions
To have fun
Cost/availability:
$15.00 for members of the Aphasia Solutions Community; $25.00 for non-
members - 0/6 seats available

Public Speaking and Leadership Training for People with Aphasia
Group Leader-Bill Connors, SLP;CCC
Group Goals:
To provide to people with aphasia practice in preparing and delivering
            speeches adapted from the Toastmasters [http://www.toastmasters.org/]
            model
To emphasize turn taking, engagement, and listening skills
To provide to people with aphasia practice ineffective impromptu
           speaking
To provide social support and networking
To practice treatment skills gained in individual sessions
To have fun
Cost/availability:
$15.00 for members of the Aphasia Solutions Community; $25.00 for non-
members - 5/6 seats available

Woman's Aphasia Group
Group Leader-Janet Ross, PWA, MSW, RSW
Group Goals:
To feel comfortable and accepted during group interactions
To emphasize turn taking, engagement, and listening skills
To provide social support and networking
To learn about stroke and aphasia recovery
To practice treatment skills gained in individual sessions
To have fun
Cost/availability:
$15.00 for members of the Aphasia Solutions Community; $25.00 for non-
members - 0/6 seats available; this is a group for women

Aphasia ConversationGroup
Group Leader-Janet Ross, PWA, MSW,RSW
GroupGoals:
To feel comfortable and accepted during group interactions
To emphasize turn taking, engagement, and listening skills
To provide social support and networking
To learn about stroke and aphasia recovery
To practice treatment skills gained in individual sessions
To have fun
Cost/availability:
$15.00 for members of the Aphasia Solutions Community; $25.00 for non-
members - 3/6 seats available

Verbs Turn Me On Group
Group Leader-Bill Connors, SLP;CCC
GroupGoals:
To focus on appreciation of, recognition of and use of verbs
To emphasize turn taking, engagement, and listening skills
To become facile in the use of various verb forms: tenses; gerunds;
nerbs; verbs in simple-compound-complex sentences; phrasal verbs
To strengthen neural connections between verbs and subjects/objects and pronouns [subjective; interrogative; demonstrative]
To practice treatment skills gained in individual sessions
To have fun
Cost/availability:
$15.00 for members of the Aphasia Solutions Community; $25.00 for non-
members - 3/6 seats available

Small Group Focused Aphasia Treatment
Group Leader-Bill Connors, SLP;CCC
Group Goals:
To provide ongoing effective and responsive aphasia treatment at an
            affordable cost in a small ( 2-3 PWA) group format
To emphasize turn taking, engagement, and listening skills
To provide the opportunity for unlimited practice incorporating dedicated
           software
To facilitate the training of practice coaches and caregivers
To engage in patient/peer modeled treatment
To have fun
* This is a 75 minute session
Cost/availability:
$30.00 for members of the Aphasia Solutions Community; $45.00 for non-
members - 2/3 seats available

Knowledge of Words
Group Leader-Bill Connors, SLP;CCC
Group Leader-Adam Miller, PWA, BS, ComputerScience 
Group Goals:
To focus on appreciation of, recognition of and use of words
To emphasize turn taking, engagement, and listening skills
To utilize everyday activities, commercial games and websites to
           reconnect word associations and word recall.
To improve adult vocabulary recognition and usage 
To practice treatment skills gained in individual sessions
To have fun
Cost/availability:
$15.00 for members of the Aphasia Solutions Community; $25.00 for non-
members - 3/6 seats available

Introduction to Sentence Shaper2
Group Leader-Marcia Linebarger, PhD, www.sentenceshaper.com
Group Goals:
To learn the basics for using the SentenceShapers software
To become acquainted with the newest SSR version
To share SSR treatment and practice ideas
To have fun
Cost/availability:
No charge-$0.00 for members of the Aphasia Solutions Community; $0.00
for non-members -  4/6 seats available

Caregivers SupportGroup
Group Leader-Janet Ross, MSW,RSW
Group Goals:
To support each other in a caregivers social network
To learn about stroke and aphasia recovery
To share ideas, concerns and resources
To discuss crisis management
To have fun
Cost/availability:
$15.00 for members of the Aphasia Solutions Community; $25.00 for non-
members - 4/6 seats available

How To Be an Effective Aphasia Practice Coach
Group Leader-Bill Connors, SLP;CCC
Group Goals:
To help coaches learn and discuss specific, effective techniques and tools in order to assist PWA in their efforts to regain conversational speech and reading/writing skills
To identify optimal practice habits and regimens
To support each other in a coach's social network
To discuss optimal practice support and encouragement strategies
To learn about the role of practice in aphasia and brain injury recovery
To discuss how to make practice fun
Cost/availability:
$15.00 for members of the Aphasia Solutions Community; $25.00 for non-
members - 3/6 seats available

Oral Motor Coordination Group
Group Leader-Anna King, PWA
Group Leader-Bill Connors, SLP;CCC
Group Goals:
To improve the ability to make rapid, rhythmic movements of the tongue,
            lips and jaw necessary for fluent speech
To establish normal breath support for connected and conversational speech
To establish skill in voice production and control for conversational
Speech and normal voice/speech projection
To discuss optimal practice support and encouragement strategies
To have fun
Cost/availability:
$15.00 for members of the Aphasia Solutions Community; $25.00 for non-
members - 3/6 seats available

The Assertive Aphasia Consumer
Group Leader-Bill Connors, SLP;CCC
Group Leader-Paul Berger, PWA, M.A., M.B.A, www.StrokeSurvivor.com
GroupGoals:
 To investigate a clear, useful and practical definition of aphasia using
            theVisual Definition of Aphasia
To identify the finest resources and tools for aphasia rehabilitation and
            recovery skills
To identify optimal practice habits and regimens for PWA
To provide a forum for discussion and questions about aphasia recovery
To discuss optimal practice support and encouragement strategies
To learn about the role of practice in aphasia and brain injury recovery
To discuss the role of humor and fun in aphasia rehabilitation
Cost/availability:
$15.00 for members of the Aphasia Solutions Community; $25.00 for non-
members - 3/6 seats available

The SLP Roundtable Discussion and Grand Rounds
Group Leader-Bill Connors, SLP;CCC
Group Leader-guests leaders
Group Goals:
To present and discuss case studies of aphasia and related disorders
To brainstorm and share optimal resources, strategies, techniques and
                    tools for aphasia treatment
To discuss practice habits and regimens for PWA
To provide a forum for discussion and questions about the evaluation and treatment of aphasia and related disorders
To support the efforts of each other
To have fun
Cost/availability:
$00.00 for members of the Aphasia Solutions Community; $25.00 for non-
members - 3/6 seats available

In the planning stage:
The Phonopraxia Group:

Elman, R.,  (2007).  Group Therapy of Neurogenic Communication Disorders: The Expert Clinician's Approach. 2nded. Plural Publishing, San Diego, CA
Friedman, T., (2005).  The World is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-first Century. Farrar, Straus & Giroux
If you wish to register for group participation or if you have questions or comments, please contact Bill Connors at 724.494.2534 or bill@aphasiatoolbox.com.  Stay tuned, we have plans for new groups over the next few months. Your your ideas are welcome. 


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Aphasia Solutions Network - Online Small Group ProgramSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Music Therapy Gives Voice to the Voiceless

on February 21, 2010 12:53 PM
SAN DIEGO—It's an impressive video. An elderly man in thick eyeglasses and a blue shirt sits in a wheelchair. A therapist sits across from him, off-camera. She tries to get him to say he's thirsty, but he can't produce the words. Several years ago, the man had a stroke that damaged the part of his brain that lets him talk, a condition known as aphasia.
Then, slowly, things begin to change. The therapist starts humming a simple, haunting melody: two notes at the same pitch, a third a bit higher, then back down. "I am thi-i-rsty," she sings. Resting her hand on the table, she taps the man's hand in time, encouraging him to sing along. "I am thirsty," he sings, in harmony. She sings the sentence; he sings it back. She says the sentence. He says it back. What would you say on a hot day like today, she asks. "I am thirsty," he answers. In a matter of minutes, a stroke patient who's been unable to speak for years has learned to express a basic human need.
The patient is undergoing Melodic Intonation Therapy. The technique was developed because a lot of patients who can't talk can still sing. Gottfried Schlaug, a neurologist at Harvard University, is studying how and why this treatment seems to work for many patients who have failed at other forms of speech therapy. He's running a randomized clinical trial of the therapy and, so far, finding that it looks pretty good. He spoke at a session here yesterday on music-language interactions in the brain at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (which publishes ScienceNOW).
The stroke patients have had damage to the part of the left side of their brain involved in speech. But similar areas on the right side of the brain can also be used, if therapy can reach them. Making music turns on much of the brain at once. It engages the hearing, emotion, and motor skills. "Singing can give entry into a broken system by engaging the right hemisphere," says Schlaug. He has compared images of patients' brains before and after the therapy and found that the right side of the brain changes, both structurally and functionally.
And the patients change, too. In another video clip, a man tries to give his address. He struggles, but he can’t get the words out. He’s clearly frustrated. It’s four years after a stroke, and the man has tried many speech therapies—all to no avail. Then, in a second video, taken after 75 Melodic Intonation Therapy sessions, the man is reciting his house number, street, and town.
Schlaug thinks music therapy isn't more widely used partly because so many people are embarrassed about singing. "The therapists might have a problem singing with a patient," he says. And not just the therapists. "Most of our male patients have a problem with this." But they settle in, and the therapy itself is easy, he says. “Our next goal is to teach caregivers of patients."
Music Therapy Gives Voice to the VoicelessSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Saturday, February 20, 2010

HAVE YOU HEARD: Chocolate Decadence was 'incredible evening'

by Marilyn McKnight Harrison
Midland Reporter-Telegram
Published: Saturday, February 20, 2010 2:09 AM CST
By Marilyn Harrison

The Aphasia Center of West Texas celebrated the courage of people with aphasia and donors throughout the Permian Basin with its fifth annual Chocolate Decadence party.

"What an incredible evening," said chairwoman Vicki Rice. "Thank you to the presenting sponsor, West Texas National Bank, and all the generous volunteers, staff, and donors for your commitment to the families and services of the Aphasia Center."

The creativity of Dena Moore, Dianne Williams, Jo Anne Richards and their host of volunteers transformed the spacious Midland Center into an evening of elegance, with luscious desserts and one-of-a-kind gifts.

A red chair sash spotlighted the seat of 2010 Sweetheart Nancy Anguish, as well as previous years' sweethearts. As CBS 7 host Stephanie Rivas stated, "Once a sweetheart, always a sweetheart."


For the annual event, families and friends reunited from Kansas, Oregon and throughout Texas, including Sally and Ken Steward, now of the Hill Country; and Ken Kimbrough of Portland, Ore.

A few of the individuals making the "sweetest party in town even sweeter" were Cathy Eastham and Rodney Robinson, Jo and Allen Douglas, Charlotte and John Seay, Janice and Steve Thompson, Kelli and Harry Bettis, Claudette and Tulsi Singh, Brenda and Jimmy Smith, Georgia Trobaugh and Kathryn and John Stuard.

Five generations of the Pemberton family, along with friends, gathered at Manor Park's Younger Center on Feb. 6 to celebrate the 100th birthday of the family's matriarch, Mary Pemberton.

The dining room was colorfully decorated with red and white balloons and red table cloths. \Birthday cake and ice cream were served.

Those attending were Pemberton's sons, Dan Pemberton and wife, Joyce, of Midland, and Donald Pemberton of Boise, Idaho.

Also present were her grandchildren and families, Rick Pemberton, wife Terri and children Taylor and Chance of Topeka, Kan.; Rick's daughter, Bobbie Pemberton and her son, Sam of Granbury; Gary Pemberton and wife Valerie of Bradenton, Fla., and their children, Diana and Bret MacFatridge and son Ryan of Haslet; Tom Pemberton and daughter, Hannah of Richardson; Caryn Pemberton of Carrollton; and Lynda Progler from the Baton Rouge, La., area.

Special guests were Mary Pemberton's pastor, the Rev. Tim Walker of First United Methodist Church, and his wife, Karen; Brenda De La Paz, Carol Bevel and Rhonda Chamness from Manor Park's Mabee Center; Holli Robertson, Younger Center activities director, and guitarist Monty Elliott, music minister for Manor Park.

Midland alumnae of Pi Beta Phi and Kappa Kappa Gamma sororities recently celebrated their common place of origin with their annual Monmouth Duo party. It The Kappas hosted the party at the home of Celia Wilson. Co-hostesses were Shelley Harper and Robin Thomas.

The two groups were organized on the campus of Monmouth College in Monmouth Ill. -- the Pi Phis in 1867 and the Kappas in 1870.

Among the Pi Phis seen in the crowd were Frances Carlton, Amanda Ellis, Jan Goree, Carolyn Roden, Terry Staub, Karen Scharbauer with her daughter, Sarah Scharbauer; and club president Ellen Hinson.


Kappas present included Brooke Mueller, Lynn Mashburn with her daughter, Deborah Baldridge; Sally Reeder, Julie LeMond, Tammy Smith, Amy Robnett, and chapter president Toffee McAllister.

In order to promote literacy, the guests were asked to bring new children's books to be donated.

The Museum of the Southwest hosted an opening reception and book signing recently for Austin photographer Burton Pritzker, whose black and white photographs will be on display at the museum through Feb. 28.

The large format, framed photographs are the major portion of a new collection of Pritzker's work acquired by the museum through the sponsorship of Tim Leach of Midland and Robert Chase of Artesia, N.M.

At the reception, museum director Tom Jones introduced the photographer, who then spoke about the process involved in producing these mostly abstract photographs.

Among those seen in the audience were Carole and Stan Jacobs, an administrator and professor of art at Midland College; museum board president Greg Dove, and vice president Karmen Bryant with her husband, Billy Bryant. Others seen enjoying the presentation and the hors d'oeuvres by Tom Redden were Elizabeth and Herb Blankinship, Shelley and Jack Harper, Claire and Jim Rhotenberry, DeLayne and Mark Wellen, Deb and Robert Chase, Amy and Tim Leach and Marianne Green, who was Tim Leach's 10th grade English teacher at Spring High School in Houston.

District Judge John Hyde was the guest speaker for the Ladies of the Petroleum Club's February luncheon meeting.

In his talk, "Traveling Through Texas on the Butterfield Overland Stage," Hyde told how the stagecoaches carried passengers, parcels and mail on scheduled trips from the Mississippi River to the West Coast.

He discussed the discomforts of traveling by stagecoach from 1858 until they were interrupted by the Civil War. Weather, food and the threat of a Comanche Indian attack were among the problems encountered.

Although the luncheon was held on Groundhog Day, the club was beautifully decked out in a red and white valentine theme.

Among those enjoying the presentation were Hyde's wife, Sharon, and their daughter, Whitney Hyde; Ava Jane Fuller, Kathleen Hernandez, Jan Brockett, Carolyn Stroman, Pat Henderson, and Gail Gililland.

A baby shower honoring mother-to-be Amanda Allen Stout and proud father-to-be, Trent Stout, was held recently at the home of Kim Carleton. Co-hostesses were Callie Speight, Janice Speight and Leslyn Wallace.

The party celebrated the upcoming arrival of Annslee Nichole, who is due on March 7.

Guests enjoyed a cake decorated with pink slippers; assorted fruits, cheese and crackers.

Among the 50 guests were grandmothers-to-be Beverly Martin of Granite Shoals and Margaret Allen and Gina Allen of Midland, and great-grandmothers Barbara Gillock of Marble Falls and Ann Lucchi of Midland.
HAVE YOU HEARD: Chocolate Decadence was 'incredible evening'SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Friday, February 19, 2010

Assembly committee proposes way to stretch, raise funds for brain-injury fund

Thursday, February 18, 2010
Last updated: Thursday February 18, 2010, 7:33 PM
State House Bureau
STATE HOUSE BUREAU
TRENTON - Faced with the prospect of 1,300 disabled people losing treatment and services, an Assembly committee today discussed how to stretch or raise more money for the Traumatic Brain Injury Fund.

To stay within the fund's $3.4 million annual budget, state officials have proposed restricting it to serve only people who have suffered a blow to the head, and excluding people who suffered a brain injury through a stroke, tumor or other trauma. Doing so would eliminate 60 percent, or about 1,300 of the 2,200 people who depend on the program to pay for rehabilitative services like speech, physical and occupational therapy.

Assembly Human Services Committee Chairwoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle said after the hearing she wanted the Department of Human Services look for ways to share administrative costs among other programs and more carefully scrutinize how money is spent by the disabled clients. She also said she was open to raising the 50-cent fee on car registrations that provides the fund with its source of revenue.

"We have to be fiscally responsible, but we also have to be socially responsible,'' Huttle said.

William Ditto, director of the state Office of Disability Services, which oversees the program, said without more money, the state had to find a way to live within the budget. Limiting the program to people who suffer brain trauma from a blow to the head best captures the Legislature's intent when it created the fund in 2001.

Ditto also explained there is a "system of checks and balances" with a panel that reviews every treatment plan. He noted that the program's rules allow the state to approve $15,000 a year in services, but the average plan runs about $6,000.

Ditto said an advisory committee and his staff looked for other ways to cut costs, including setting a tighter limit on what every participant may spend a year. They decided against it.

"If you dilute the find too much," he said, "it doesn't help anybody.''

People who rely on the fund pleaded with lawmakers to find an alternative to restricting the program.

Eunice Bustillo of River Edge, a 40-year-old mother who suffered a stroke seven years ago, said the fund pays for her treatment at the Adler Aphasia Center in Bergen County. Treatment has helped her regain her speaking, writing and reading skills.

"Every single day, I have really improved my reading, writing -- so many things,'' Bustillo said. "Please don't take that away from me. Is not all damage to the brain traumatic?''

TRENTON - Faced with the prospect of 1,300 disabled people losing treatment and services, an Assembly committee today discussed how to stretch or raise more money for the Traumatic Brain Injury Fund.

To stay within the fund's $3.4 million annual budget, state officials have proposed restricting it to serve only people who have suffered a blow to the head, and excluding people who suffered a brain injury through a stroke, tumor or other trauma. Doing so would eliminate 60 percent, or about 1,300 of the 2,200 people who depend on the program to pay for rehabilitative services like speech, physical and occupational therapy.

Assembly Human Services Committee Chairwoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle said after the hearing she wanted the Department of Human Services look for ways to share administrative costs among other programs and more carefully scrutinize how money is spent by the disabled clients. She also said she was open to raising the 50-cent fee on car registrations that provides the fund with its source of revenue.

"We have to be fiscally responsible, but we also have to be socially responsible,'' Huttle said.

William Ditto, director of the state Office of Disability Services, which oversees the program, said without more money, the state had to find a way to live within the budget. Limiting the program to people who suffer brain trauma from a blow to the head best captures the Legislature's intent when it created the fund in 2001.

Ditto also explained there is a "system of checks and balances" with a panel that reviews every treatment plan. He noted that the program's rules allow the state to approve $15,000 a year in services, but the average plan runs about $6,000.

Ditto said an advisory committee and his staff looked for other ways to cut costs, including setting a tighter limit on what every participant may spend a year. They decided against it.

"If you dilute the find too much," he said, "it doesn't help anybody.''

People who rely on the fund pleaded with lawmakers to find an alternative to restricting the program.

Eunice Bustillo of River Edge, a 40-year-old mother who suffered a stroke seven years ago, said the fund pays for her treatment at the Adler Aphasia Center in Bergen County. Treatment has helped her regain her speaking, writing and reading skills.

"Every single day, I have really improved my reading, writing -- so many things,'' Bustillo said. "Please don't take that away from me. Is not all damage to the brain traumatic?''
Assembly committee proposes way to stretch, raise funds for brain-injury fundSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Thursday, February 18, 2010

workshop for people w/ aphasia w/ Senators Weinberg, Buono, Sheriff Spicuzzo

A workshop for people with aphasia and their families:
Advocay and Aphasia:  Perspectives from our Elected Officials
Friday, March 19th
Kean University
Speakers:
  NJ Senator Loretta Weinberg (keynote), NJ Senator Barbara Buono, Sheriff Joseph Spicuzzo
Our speakers will share not just their professional views but their personal perspectives as well as they each have firsthand experience with aphasia or have seen it in their families.
Brochure with all the details. 
Brochure

--
Wendy Greenspan, MA, CCC-SLP
Institute for Adults Living with Communication Disabilities
Institute Coordinator
Kean University
Department of Communication Disorders and Deafness
1000 Morris Avenue
Union, New Jersey 07083
ph:  908-737-5811
fax:  908-737-5805
 
workshop for people w/ aphasia w/ Senators Weinberg, Buono, Sheriff SpicuzzoSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Monday, February 15, 2010

Paul Berger & Stephanie Mensh’s Stroke Survivor NEWS & ATTITUDE FOR YOU - FEBRUARY 2010

 1. NEWS: RESEARCH on Stroke Recovery & Rehabilitation:
       Anti-depressant May Improve Cognitive Function

The antidepressant medication escitalopram (Lexapro) showed improvement in certain memory and cognitive skills in patients who received it for 12 weeks following a stroke, compared to stroke survivors who took a placebo pill or a problem-solving therapy program. The study involved 129 patients randomized to the drug therapy--a type of anti-depressant known as a selective serotonin
reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), sugar-pill, or therapy.

       The study, conducted by researchers at theUniversity of Iowa, showed that the patients taking the medication had better scores in mental functionn as well as activities of daily living.

To read a summary from PsychCentral, visit: http://tinyurl.com/PsychCenSSRI

For an abstract on the study in the February issue of the AMA's "Archives of General Psychiatry," visit: http://tinyurl.com/ArchPsyFeb

For additional resources to help you find information on medical, health, rehabilitation, recovery, self-empowerment, and more, we have collected our favorite links at: http://www.strokesurvivor.com/resource_links.html.

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*** ADVERTISE YOUR PRODUCT OR SERVICE IN OUR NEWSLETTER ***

Contact us at Paul@strokesurvivor.com or 703-241-2375.
Special rates for newsletter & web: www.strokesurvivor.com!
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*** Intensive Aphasia Therapy News ***

As the readers of my newsletter know, I am continuing speech therapy with Bill Connors at the Pittsburgh Aphasia Treatment, Research and Education Center (PATREC).

I am in Virginia and Bill is in Pittsburgh, but I see him 3 times a week over the Internet using my webcam on Skype orooVoo. I set my goals and the pace. I  have lots of homework, most that I do alone on my own schedule.
Sometimes I study with one of Bill's clients.

       This month, I am working on compound verbs. Bill gives me a verb like "take"..."I take the cake" and I expand it to a compound verb, like "am
taking"..."I am taking your cake." Bill gave me a list of suggested verbs to start. I practice with his list, and add my own verbs.

My friends tell me they are impressed with my continuing improvement. I enjoy Bill's innovative approach and tools at http://www.aphasiatoolbox.com.

       For a complimentary consumer Q&A fact sheet,
       contact Bill Connors at bill@aphasiatoolbox.com or
       phone 724-494-2534.

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2. PAUL’S TIPS FOR SURVIVORS:
       Exercise Your Brain With Word Power

All stroke survivors should exercise their bodies and their brains for health and a good attitude. One exercise I recommend for your brain is to find the meaning of words you do not understand. The best time to look up the word is
when you are reading a sentence that interests you.

For example, if I receive an email and a friend uses a word
I don't know, I can look up the meaning quickly by:

       * Copying the word into a Word document and
       clicking the keys Shift and F7 together. This opens
       the "Research" window and shows a dictionary
       definition. If I need more information to help me
       understand, I can select the Thesaurus, for words
       with similar meanings.

       * Using an online dictionary like the Encarta
       dictionary at: http://tinyurl.com/EncartaDictionary

I also have a Franklin electronic dictionary about the size of a large calculator to use when I am online but do not want to switch out of the document, or reading the newspaper or a book when I am not near the computer.

       You can exercise your brain everyday with a Word-of-the-Day. I have a word delivered to my emailevery day by Vocab Vitamins. They have a no cost
subscription service at: http://www.vocabvitamins.com/

I cut and paste words from the dictionary or the word-a-day with their definitions and sentences into a reference file. Sometimes I remember that I looked up a word but do not remember the meaning, so I refer to my notes.

       Here are some of my favorite words:
       * chimera
       * orb
       * namby-pamby

What new words will you find to exercise your brain today?

Other insights and tips for coping with life and taking control of your recovery after stroke are available on my website at http://www.strokesurvivor.com.

Do you have a tip to share?  Send it to me at Paul@strokesurvivor.com for a free gift if we use it.

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*** Celebrate National Heart Health Month ***

Celebrate Valentines Day all month as part of American Heart Month. The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) cautions that millions of women are at risk of heart disease, at increasingly younger ages.

       80 percent of midlife women (ages 40 to 60) have one or more of the modifiable risk factors: high blood pressure, high cholesterol, obesity, physical inactivity, diabetes, and smoking. 60 percent of younger women, ages 20-39, have one or more of these risk factors.

Women can prevent heart disease by reducing their risk, and following a heart-healthy lifestyle. It's never too early or too late to take action.

Learn more at: http://www.nih.gov/news/health/feb2010/nhlbi-02.htm

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3. STEPHANIE’S TIPS FOR CAREGIVERS:
       Fight Stress and Improve Your Attitude & Health

One word solution to caregivers, professionals and stroke survivors to fight stress, improve your attitude, and prevent stroke: CHOCOLATE.

Yet another medical review demonstrates the health benefits of my beloved chocolate: one study found that 44,489 people who ate one serving of chocolate per week were 22 percent less likely to have a stroke than people who ate no chocolate. The second study found that 1,169 people who ate
50 grams of chocolate once a week were 46 percent less likely to die following a stroke than people who did not eat chocolate. If you need the citation:
http://tinyurl.com/Choc-Prev-Stroke

       The studies do not explain why, but some suggest that chocolate is rich in antioxidants called flavonoids, which may have a protective effect against stroke and other health conditions.

Chocolate also triggers pleasure responses in the brain and when you take it in your favorite style, whether cookie, cake, dark, filled candy, ice cream, hot cocoa, pudding, or pancake, adds to the enjoyment, like a minute spa for your
senses. If you concentrate on the chocolate, and savor each bite, you can amplify the effect, sooth your nerves, reduce stress, and lift your mood.

       Since I watch my cholesterol, I look for low fat chocolate alternatives. My favorites are fat-free chocolate pudding, reduced fat/sugar hot chocolate,
and fat-free No Pudge Fudge brownies. You can make a pan of these satisfying brownies or just one in the microwave in two minutes. My grocery store carries the mix in the bakery aisle. For more, visit: http://www.nopudge.com/

A special note to family and friends: Valentines Day may be over, but you can never have enough CHOCOLATE.

For more tips for caregivers, please visit: http://www.strokesurvivor.com/articles_and_tips.html.

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** Combine Reading & Listening for Solutions & Adventure **
       Brighten Your Day With ATTITUDE!

Brighten winter days with proven solutions, adventure, and motivation in these special new combination sets of:

       "How to Conquer the World With One Hand
       ...And an Attitude"
               and
       "YOU CAN DO IT, 105 Thoughts, Feelings and
       Solutions to Inspire You"

Used by speech, OT & PT for classroom education and for client enrichment, these books were created by stroke survivor Paul Berger, for stroke survivors, families and professionals. Real life, real feelings, real thoughts,
real everyday solutions.

       Combination set #1 offers both books in paperback book format for a discount of $3.50 !!

       Combination set #2 offers both books in audio CD format for a savings of $7.00 !!

Order your sets from our secure online store:

       Books set only $19.95 plus shipping: http://tinyurl.com/Combo-1-Books-only-19-95

       Audio CDs set only $64.45 plus shipping: http://tinyurl.com/Combo-2-AudioCDs-only-64-45

For details on these award-wining books and CDs, please visit: http://www.strokesurvivor.com/products.html

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4. PAUL'S FAVORITES:
       Easy Socks

I can only use one hand when I dress, so putting on socks can be hard. Casual cotton socks are okay, but when I need to wear a jacket and tie, I need black dress socks. I found Clarks' men's socks to be the best. They are soft, easy to
stretch, and keep their shape on my leg. They are a mix of rayon, nylon microfiber, and acrylic. For a store near you, visit the Clarks' website at:
http://clarks.zappos.com/ourcompany.zhtml

       I order them in the shoe store or by phone, since they are not yet available for purchase from the website. Call: 1-800-425-2757 and ask for black socks, item # 413303001001 (Style # HA-133). They ship them directly to the house.

For details on other Paul-tested helpful books and products, visit:
http://www.strokesurvivor.com/reading_list.html and
http://www.strokesurvivor.com/lifestyle_products.html

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5. WHAT'S NEW on the Stroke Survivor.com web site.

We're adding helpful new things to our web site all the time. Coming soon are links to:

       * AphasiaNYC (New York City)

We have many useful links for survivors, families and professionals on rehabilitation, motivation, and to regain fulfillment posted to our Resource Links pages. Visit:
http://www.strokesurvivor.com/resource_links.html.

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Would you like to view a previous month's newsletter? Visit our newsletter archive at: http://www.strokesurvivor.com/newsletter.html

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6. Social Security Disability Income Expedited Eligibility
       Primary Progressive Aphasia Added to Special List

Primary Progressive Aphasia was recently added to the Social Security Disability Income program's list of special conditions that qualify for "Compassionate Allowances." This special list allows the Social Security Administration to electronically target and make speedy decisions for
applicants with specific types of disabilities.

       For a press release on the new list of disabilities under the Compassionate Allowances program, visit the SSA website at: http://tinyurl.com/SSA-CA-Press

       For details on the Compassionate Allowances program, visit: http://tinyurl.com/SSA-CA-Details

For information on Primary Progressive Aphasia, visit: http://tinyurl.com/AboutPPA

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7. Stroke/Aphasia Reading problems?

After a stroke, many people have reading and other language problems, known as "aphasia." Hearing a sentence read aloud helps to understand it. You can hear this newsletter read aloud while each word is highlighted on the computer screen with the FREE text reader software described at:
http://www.strokesurvivor.com/disability_access.html

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***FIND INSPIRATION AND SOLUTIONS AT STROKESURVIVOR.COM***

Stroke survivors, family, friends, professionals...anyone seeking inspiration, motivation, and more!

       Find books, audio-books, tapes, and special tools created for stroke recovery by stroke survivor-expert, Paul Berger at: http://www.strokesurvivor.com/products.html
Paul Berger & Stephanie Mensh’s Stroke Survivor NEWS & ATTITUDE FOR YOU - FEBRUARY 2010SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend
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