Low-intensity physical exercise can reduce depression symptoms and enhance the results of physical therapy among recovering from a stroke, it is claimed.
Speaking to the Canadian Stroke Congress, researcher for the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada (HSFC) Dr Jocelyn Harris said that the benefits of physical activity are stronger than anyone had suspected.
People may experience depression following a stroke, which in turn can cause a lack of motivation and increased fatigue, which hinders the recovery process.
But even low levels of physical activity can help to improve physical and emotional well-being, with a recent study by the foundation confirming this emphatically.
Dr Michael Hill from the HSFC said: "Depression may be a direct result of the damage to a region of brain and in addition, the sudden change in ability and life circumstances.
"It's important to know that depression is treatable."
A further study by the HSFC, released this week, found that caring for a parent who has had a stroke can exacerbate existing problems in the relationship.
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