Do you know the signs and symptoms of stroke?

Posted on August 11, 2011

From FCHP Wellness Works Today, Volume 6, Number 1

holding handsBeing able to recognize the symptoms of a stroke, also known as a “brain attack,” is the first step to making a difference in what could be a life-or-death situation. You must act “F.A.S.T.” if someone you know is showing signs of a stroke.

The most common type of stroke is called an ischemic stroke, in which a blood clot restricts the blood flow to the brain. There’s a short window of opportunity to begin treatment for stroke—usually just three hours.

Remember the signs—F.A.S.T.

  • Face: Changes in facial movement • Sudden or severe headaches • Unable to smile • Side of the face droops 
  • Arms: Weakness in inability to raise arms  • Paralysis or numbness on one side of the body 
  • Speech: Can't repeat a simple sentence  • Slurring words  •  Difficulty with speech
  • Time: If you think someone is showing any of the above symptoms don’t hesitate—act fast and dial 911 immediately. You just may save someone's life.

A stroke can strike at any age and is, in fact, on the rise among younger people.

Reduce your chances of becoming a stroke victim

If you have high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease and/or diabetes, work with your doctor to monitor and manage these conditions. And, if you smoke, quit!