What You Need to Know About Strokes

Strokes can happen at any age, although they’re more likely to affect older people. In the UK, strokes are the third most common cause of death. During a stroke, the blood supply to the brain is disrupted and oxygen and nutrients are prevented from reaching parts of the brain that need it, which can lead to brain tissue damage.


Stroke symptoms vary based on the extent of the disruption and the area of the brain affected. Commonly, numbness, weakness, facial drooping, slurred speech, and vision problems occur. Other symptoms may include pain, incontinence, tiredness, memory loss, or dizziness. Strokes usually happen quickly and may occur during the night while the patient is sleeping.


Risk factors for having a stroke include smoking, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, obesity, poor diet, and a history of heart disease. In addition, someone who’s already suffered a stroke are at a higher risk for having another one.


The degree of recovering from a stroke depends on the extent of brain damage and the area impacted. In many cases, initial recovery may be rapid, but it can take years to recover completely. Immobility and other affects may also wind up being permanent.


In the days following a stroke, family members and friends may be called upon to provide care. In addition, medical professionals such as physiotherapists, speech therapists, and occupational therapists can help the patient regain mobility.


For the person who’s suffered a stroke, it can be an immense shock. Fortunately, the condition is well understood and there are many assistive devices available.

Practical Aides

Almost every aspect of life can be impacted by the effects of a stroke. Depending on the severity and type of symptoms, different aides may be useful in helping the patient with daily chores and activities.


In some cases, a stroke can leave the person immobile or unable to walk. Caretakers and the patient can benefit from devices like handling belts, ceiling hoists, stand aides, and repositioning kits all help minimize the risks and effort of helping stroke patients move.


For stroke patients who can walk, instability and balance issues may occur. Walking frames, rollators, and household trolleys can help them retain independent movement. In addition, electric wheelchairs and attendant propelled wheelchairs offer assistance to those patients who are unable to walk.


Using the toilet or bathing can be difficult. To help preserve dignity and independence, consider items like toilet frames, bath lifts, bath hoists, and shower commode chairs.

Sensory Aides

In many instances, vision or hearing can be impacted after a stroke. Amplified telephones, hearing aids, and special alarm clock can be of great help to patients with hearing loss. For those with vision loss, audio labeling systems, Braille aides, and large format devices such as telephones with big buttons can be of great help.


Some people who’ve suffered a stroke can experience incontinence. Fortunately, there are many products available to protect clothing, furniture, and bedding, as well as help retain dignity. Absorbent pads, stretch pants, and ergonomically shaped pads are discrete methods for handling incontinence.


Often while recovering from a stroke, patients will undergo physiotherapy. Exercise balls, hand exercisers, and resistance bands can all aide in the process of regaining strength and coordination.



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Please note: VAT is removed in the checkout process

In the UK, disabled people do not have to pay VAT when buying certain disability aids and services (This can be claimed by friend or family member purchasing on their behalf). Not everything supplied to disabled people is necessarily zero-rated for VAT. Goods and services on which you do not have to pay VAT are usually known as 'zero-rated' or 'eligible for VAT relief.

Who is eligible for VAT relief?

You must be 'chronically sick or disabled' to qualify for VAT relief. The HMRC comment on this is as follows. A person is 'chronically sick or disabled' if they either:

VAT Relief on our Disability Aids

All products on the Aids for Mobility website are flagged with an option to claim VAT relief during Checkout if it applies to that item. When you add a zero-rated product or service to your Basket, you will be asked to tick a checkbox to confirm that you, or the person for whom you are buying the item, are eligible for VAT Relief.

How VAT relief works

If you are claiming VAT Relief you will be asked to complete an extra few questions during Checkout, where we will ask you to provide brief details of your disability and confirmation that the product is for 'personal or domestic use'. We will keep a record of this declaration along with your order details. You can then buy the product(s) in your Basket at a price that excludes VAT. You will be asked to make this declaration each time you place an order that includes zero-rated products. It is a legal requirement that we record this information for every order, and we apologise for the inconvenience.

More information from HMRC

You can find out more about VAT Relief for disabled people on the HM Revenue and Customs website. If you cannot find the answer to your questions there or would prefer to speak to an adviser, you can call their Helpline on 0845 302 02 03.

The helpline is open from 8.00 am to 5.00 pm, Monday to Friday. (Closed weekends and bank holidays).