Have you discovered the power of podcasts to inspire, educate, and optimize your commute, workout or wait time? If yes, then you share this unique 21st century audio experience with over 65 million other Americans. If no, then now may be the time to pull out your headphones, tablet or phone and start listening.
Like a mini-radio show, but about a specific topic in which you are interested, podcasts are free and easy to find and listen to. Thousands of podcasts are available on every possible topic from business, politics, and sports, to technology, health, and hobbies, and can take the format of a panel discussion, multi-host talk show, or narrative first or third-person storytelling. And yes, there are podcasts that speak directly to the challenges and triumphs of caregiving as well as recovering from brain injury and stroke or living with aphasia.
Whether you are a clinician, a caregiver or a survivor of stroke, TBI or aphasia, we’ve curated five podcasts that we think you will find informative and inspiring. There’s something about podcasts that leads listeners to feel they have a personal connection with the podcast host – scientists think this may come from the “intimacy effect” of audio. The podcasts below don’t disappoint in this regard – we think you’ll feel a real connection with the real world survivors and family members behind these shows.
- The “Slow Road To Better” Podcast by Stroke Comeback Center – We love this podcast! It is produced with humor and love by stroke and brain injury survivors who are members of The Stroke Comeback Center in Northern Virginia. The group talks and laughs together as they discuss the “slow road to better” and the challenges faced along the way. Listen to the first episode (there are currently 54!) for introductions and backstories for everyone in the group. More recently, they discuss communicating with aphasia, exercise, dating, participating in research studies, the concept of a recovery plateau, and more. The show is rated five stars in iTunes.
- Adventures in Brain Injury Podcast: Exploring neuroplasticity, neurorehabilitation, and brain optimization – Founded and co-hosted by Cavin Balaster, who survived a two-story fall and was diagnosed with diffuse axonal injury, this blog and podcast helped Cavin explore and share his symptoms of brain injury like severe brain fog, memory loss, double-vision, and more. His recovery journey led him to work with medical experts to help guide other brain injury survivors and their families. His co-host Michelle, is a former ballroom dancer, choreographer, and mom, who survived a brain tumor and auto-immune encephalitis. Together, they discuss their brain rehabilitation experiences with practitioners and fellow brain injury survivors.
- Aphasia Access Conversations by Aphasia Access – Clinicians will find this podcast helpful as it delivers the latest aphasia resources and tips from Life Participation professionals.Topics include best practices in aphasia care, aphasia group treatment ideas, communication access strategies, how to run an aphasia choir, the future of aphasia care and more. The “conversations” include interviews with well-known clinicians in the field. Produced by Aphasia Access, a not-for-profit dedicated to increasing awareness and treatment options for those living with aphasia.
- Guide to Surviving Burnout, by CaregiverDave, the Caregiver’s Caregiver
Dave Nassaney, longtime caregiver for his wife, hosts this podcast with Adrienne Gruberg, founder of The Caregiver Space website. They discuss how to deal with emotional stress and burnout – one of the most common challenges of caregiving. The podcast features interviews with medical experts, personalities, authors and other caregivers – all of who are working toward a balanced and quality life for themselves and for their loved ones. Delivers inspiration, information, practical advice and stories from the field.
- Sleep Better With Help From Science | Podcast by NPR – Whether you are a survivor, caregiver or clincinan, you need a good night’s sleep – but not many of us get it (one third of Americans don’t sleep well, according to experts). Throw in the stress of recovery or caregiving, and you’ve got a recipe for sleepless nights. Enter this helpful podcast, which explains the science behind sleep and gives you the tools and techniques that will help you “drift off into dreamland”, in 20 minute doses. Reviewers give it high marks and say the information provided is “engaging and actionable”.
Inspired enough to create your own podcast?
It can be done! There are multiple platforms available now which can help you with recording, editing and broadcasting. The content is up to you. Start with How to Start Your Own Podcast – a fairly comprehensive guide to DIY podcasting. Let your voice be heard!