Over the time, stroke survivors may be able to regain their strength physically, but the setbacks with reading comprehension, cognitive skills, and short-term memory issues may persist for long. And, hence they are encouraged to indulge in some leisure activity or start a new hobby so that Neuroplasticity can be initiated in the damaged part of the brain.
Using photography as a leisure activity can help stroke survivors build confidence and express themselves creatively. The added benefit is reduced depression and anxiety, which ultimately contributes to speedy stroke recovery. While it may not be easy in the beginning, it’s not certainly impossible. Following tips can help you attempt something that people remember as a photographic memory.
Do your homework
If you want to try Photography as a new hobby, but you’re not sure how, try talking to other stroke survivors to understand physical challenges involved ahead. Many stroke support groups focus on leisure activities after stroke. Joining such a group is a way of getting out for photography based meetings and outings. It is a chance to continue with your interest or start a new interest in photography. You can also visit some exhibitions to get inspired.
Choose the right camera
Instead of using heavy DSLR or large film camera, use a smaller digital camera. Many recently launched cameras with new features can make photography much easier, and provide more dimensions for a creative exposure. Features like bracketing can help you achieve a perfectly exposed photograph. Good cameras can cope with low light situations and have the capability to shoot at higher ISOs.
Start with candid photography
Candid photography is the right kind of genre a stroke survivor can go for. The good news is candid photography starts at home. Also, candid photography is not about perfection, it is more about capturing that very moment of life and the memories associated with it. So few shadows here and there don’t really matter.
Use a walker with a seat to get around and take pictures. Turn the walker around and sit down. From the seat, set up the tripod and put the camera on top of it. If dexterity is an issue after stroke, take your caregiver’s help.
Choose automatic settings
Automatic mode provides you the safety of a good photograph without really thinking about various controls on your camera, which would be a challenge for any stroke survivor. Always turn on anti-shake mode to ensure that a good shot is not shaken by a weakened hand that is affected by stroke.
Do not give up
Whenever you plan to switch to outdoor or nature photography, start by taking simple photos of flowers, the lake and sunsets. The aim of this activity is to give stroke survivors confidence, to get them out of the house and get them moving on. In the beginning, snaps could be either off center, too light or too dark. Do not give up. In the future, you will be able to see it as a learning experience. Let go off the past and focus on what truly matters at the moment — capturing the beauty of what’s around you through the lens.
This Blog is contributed by Dr. Deepak Kr. Nain. He is a certified therapist who specializes in the field of rehabilitation. Deepak possesses a clinical expertise in prescribing the best solutions to help people with neurological disorders such as Parkinson’s disease, Stroke, Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and Guillain-Barré Syndrome (GBS).