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Stay aware for Action on Stroke Month

May is Action on Stroke Month, an initiative that aims to raise awareness on the symptoms and risk factors associated with stroke.

In the UK, stroke is the third biggest killer behind heart disease and cancer. Thanks to advances in science and medicine and better awareness, the number of people dying from stroke has almost halved in the last two decades.

However an ageing population, rising obesity rates, and unhealthy lifestyles mean many people are at higher risk than ever.

When stroke happens, urgent medical treatment is vital – knowing how to recognise the signs and symptoms in yourself and your loved ones could save a life.

Know the signs

Strokes happen when blood supply to the brain is restricted or stopped. When this happens, brain cells begin to die, which can lead to serious complications including disability, brain injury and even death.

The FAST test is an internationally recognised test to help people spot the signs of a stroke or mini stroke. Learn the acronym and what each letter represents.

  • F: Facial weakness
    People suffering from stroke often experience dropping of the mouth and eyes. Can the person smile? Are they having trouble controlling facial muscles?
  • A: Arm weakness
    Weakness or numbness in one or both arms is the second sign. Can the person lift both arms and keep them there?
  • S: Speech problems
    Slurred words and muddled speech are the third major indicator that a stroke has occurred. Ask them to repeat a simple phrase to test listening and speaking.
  • T: Time to call 999
    If any of these symptoms are present, call 999 right away; quick medical intervention could save a life.

Reducing your risk

High blood pressure is the leading cause of stroke and a risk factor that can be managed at least in part through lifestyle changes.

Smoking, being overweight, lack of exercise, and unhealthy diet are also risk factors within our control –  if you have high blood pressure, speak to your GP about how you can make manageable lifestyle changes to minimise your risk.

Atrial fibrillation – a form of irregular heartbeat – also raises the risk of blood clots and stroke. This can be detected during a routine medical check or ECG test.

Do you know the signs and symptoms of stroke?

 

 

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Hello there! I’m Rachel and I’m the Features Editor for Silversurfers. I work behind the scenes to bring interesting, informative and entertaining subject matter to the Silversurfers community. I hope you enjoy the features we have shared with you. Please feel free to comment below and share your thoughts with us, we love to hear from you!

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Tricia993
27th May 2017
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Thanks for voting!
Thank you for the information.
Pat ( Tricia 993)
StanL
26th May 2017
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Thanks for voting!
Thanks for that very informative information
wallers2
26th May 2017
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Thanks for voting!
Thanks. Very helpfu.

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