A stroke happens when the blood flow to the brain is disrupted and the brain cells start dying. It can happen to anyone. According to MedicineNet, more than one-third of the people hospitalized for a stroke are under 65 years old. High blood pressure, high cholesterol, and smoking are the biggest risk factors.
Time matters extremely when it comes to a person having a stroke, stresses the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. If the person is treated within the hour of the stroke, they may be saved from lifetime disabilities or even death. Whether you choose to believe this or not, it’s up to you, but there are some ways that the organism is signalizing a stroke a lot earlier than it actually happens. These signals may occur sometimes several hours before, sometimes it can be days or even weeks.
Here are 7 early warning signs of stroke:
1. Weak Arm
Feeling weak or numb, usually just on one side, may be indicating a stroke. WebMD recommends for people experiencing this symptom to try and raise their hands above their head – can they do it? Is one hand notably lower than the other?
According to the Stroke Association, an unexpected confusion is one of the most important clues that a stroke might occur. The confusion here can relate to either an atypical incapacity to comprehend what other people are saying or having difficulty to express a thought.
3. Face Drooping
One side of the face may look somewhat asymmetrical or droopy. According to Stroke ORG, the affected person should try to smile and see if their smile is uneven or lopsided.
4. Speech Difficulty
A person affected by a stroke often has trouble speaking clearly and tends to slur their words. Healthline recommends asking the person to try and speak again, to ensure if they’re speaking without mumbling.
5. Balance Problems
According to MedicineNet, another signal for stroke is when a person is experiencing sudden issues with balance and coordination. If you don’t know for certain, help the person by asking them to touch the tip of their nose, or walk straight.
According to MedicineNet, sudden blindness in one eye or double vision can be a sign of an impending stroke.
7. Severe Headaches
WebMD says that an unexpected intense headache may be signalizing a stroke, specifically if it’s combined with other signals. Remember, some of these signals may happen with a migraine, so make sure to ask the person if the headache is out of the ordinary for them.
Like we said above, time plays a huge role in the end result when it comes to a stroke, so you need to make sure that you can recognize these signals if someone around you is experiencing them. And to help you remember them easier, the American Stroke Association has come up with a pneumonic:
F.A.S.T or Face drooping + Arm weakness + Speech difficulty = Time to call 911.