World Stroke Day is celebrated on October 29 to raise awareness and advocacy campaigns and build commitment to reducing the burden of stroke at global, regional and local level. World Stroke Day amplifies individual voices by involving more people into the conversation about stroke prevention, treatment and support.
Stroke is a leading cause of death round the world. 80 million people in the world have a stroke, 50 million stroke survivors live with some form of permanent disability and for many, life after stroke won’t be quite the same; but, with the right care and support living a meaningful life is still possible and to get #UpAgainAfterStroke.
What is stroke?
A stroke is a medical emergency that occurs when the blood supply to part of the brain is severely reduced, resulting in to damage of brain tissue. This affects person’s appearance, speech, sight and body functions.
Stroke is a leading cause of death and disability globally. It can happen to anyone at any age and impacts survivors, family and friends, workplaces and communities.
Recognizing the signs of stroke (FAST) and getting medical help is one of the best ways to improve the outcome of a stroke.
Common symptoms of stroke can be remembered as phase think F.A.S.T Where
F stands for face, ask the person to smile and see if one side of the face droops.
A is for arms, ask the person to raise both arms and look if one arm drifts downwards.
S stands for speech, ask the person to repeat a simple phrase. Is speech slurred or strange?
T is for time to call ambulance, if you observe any of these signs, call immediately 102 or your emergency number for ambulance.
First aid if you suspect any stroke patient:
Carry out the FAST test. If you have noticed any of signs in FAST test, call 102 or your emergency number immediately as the stroke patient needs immediate help.
Assist a conscious patient into the position of greatest comfort.
Cover the patient to reduce heat loss.
Talk to person to reassure; while you wait for ambulance.
If patient is unconscious or not fully alert, but breathing normally, place the patient on their side in a supported position.
Living life after a stroke:
For most stroke survivors, caregivers and families, life will be different after stroke. Accepting and adjusting to life after stroke is fundamental to the recovery and well-being. Finding ‘new normal’ won’t happen all at once - but that’s OK. By working with healthcare team, developing new routines and tracking small step-by-step goals, can make progress smooth.
Stroke is treatable:
Stroke is a complex medical issue. But there are ways to significantly reduce its impact. Recognizing the signs of stroke early, treating it as a medical emergency with admission to a specialized stroke unit, and access to the best professional care can substantially improve outcomes.
The early recognition and right care makes a difference, but many people are not getting the stroke treatment they need.
Stroke is a silent killer. Take following actions to prevent stroke:
Control your high blood pressure- Almost half of all strokes are linked to hypertension (high blood pressure). Knowing and controlling blood pressure with lifestyle changes, or medication will reduce your risk of stroke.
Do moderate exercises five times a week- Over1/3 of all strokes occur to people who don’t do regular exercise.
Eat a healthy, balanced diet- Almost a quarter of strokes are linked to poor diet, particularly low consumption of fruit and vegetables. Eat five or more portions of fruit and vegetables and low salt intake to reduce your risk of stroke.
Maintain a healthy weight (Body mass index (BMI) or waist to hip ratio) - Almost 1 in 5 strokes are linked to obesity. Overweight and obesity can be detected by either BMI or waist to hip ratio (divide your waist measurement by your hip measurement, if the number is over 0.9 (man) and 0.85 (woman) there is a higher risk of stroke and you should lose weight).
Reduce your cholesterol- More than 1 in 4 strokes are linked to high levels of ‘bad’ (LDL) cholesterol. Eat low saturated, non-hydrogenated fats instead of saturated fats. If it is not possible with diet alone then consult your doctor about medication.
Stop smoking and avoid second- hand exposure- More than 1 in 10 strokes are linked to smoking. Stopping smoking will reduce your risk of stroke. Getting help to quit increases your chances of success.
Reduce alcohol intake- Over 1 million strokes each year are linked to excessive alcohol consumption. Reducing alcohol intake will help to reduce stroke risk.
Identify and treat atrial fibrillation- An irregular heartbeat or other heart condition is linked to 9% of strokes. Talk to your doctor about possible treatments to reduce your risk.
Control diabetes/prevent diabetes, as diabetes increases the risk of stroke. If you have diabetes, talk to your doctor about treatment and life style changes to control diabetes; and reduce your risk of stroke.
Get educated about stroke - Equitable access to healthcare and health education will have a positive impact on decreasing stroke and other non-communicable diseases.
- PUBLISHED DATE : Oct 23, 2018
- PUBLISHED BY : NHP Admin
- CREATED / VALIDATED BY : Dr. Aruna Rastogi
- LAST UPDATED BY : Oct 23, 2018
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