The Risks and Symptoms of a Stroke
It is reported that women are more likely than men to be a victim of stroke. In fact, one in five women will have a stroke in their lifetime. Fortunately, four out of five strokes are preventable by seeing your doctor every year.
A stroke is caused by an interruption of blood flow to the brain. Some symptoms include sudden difficulty with vision and slurred speech, comprehension problems, sudden numbness in arms and legs, difficulty in walking, balance or coordination problems, and sudden severe headache with no known cause.
Recognizing A Stroke
Recognizing the symptoms of a stroke quickly can help make sure they don’t become permanent. Look for facial drooping, arm weakness, and disturbed speech.
The biggest risk factor for a stroke is high blood pressure or hypertension. Additionally, diabetes, smoking, and obesity can also increase a person’s risk. The majority of people who have high blood pressure aren’t aware of it and therefore aren’t treating it. Around 1 in 3 women have high blood pressure, and only about half have it under control. High blood pressure usually doesn’t show any symptoms, so it’s hard to people to realize they have high blood pressure until something catastrophic, such as a stroke, happens.
A Life Saving Acronym
The common acronym to keep in mind is FAST:
Face: Look at the person’s face. Is it drooping or looking different than usual?
Arms: Ask the person to raise their arms. Is one side tingling, weak, or numb?
Speech: Is their speech slurred or can they speak at all?
Time: The sooner you call 911 and get medical treatment, the better the outcome.
There are some early interventions for stroke, especially within the first three hours of onset of symptoms, that can reverse any long-term deficits. Getting to the emergency room quickly before a stroke, or as soon as possible after it occur is very important.
According to medical authorities, strokes affect twice as many women as breast cancer and are the fourth leading cause of passing for senior women. If a loved one of yours or anyone you know has had a history of stroke, or is showing symptoms, please reach out to a stroke specialist today.