Otsego United Methodist Church
Thursday, May 23, 2013
Where Jesus' Love is Lived!
Health and Wellness
May is National Stroke Awareness Month. This information and more can be found at www.strokeassociation.org. A stroke occurs when a blood vessel that carries oxygen and nutrients to the brain is either blocked by a clot or bursts (or ruptures). When that happens, part of the brain cannot get the blood (and oxygen) it needs, so it and brain cells die. Quickly identifying that a person is having a stroke and getting them medical attention immediately can help lessen the severity and devastation of a stroke.
F.A.S.T. is an easy way to remember the sudden signs and symptoms of a stroke. When you can spot the signs, you'll know quickly that you need to call 9-1-1 for help. This is important because the sooner a stroke victim gets to the hospital, the sooner they'll get treatment. And that can make a remarkable difference in their recovery.
Face Drooping Does one side of the face droop or is it numb? Ask the person to smile.
Arm Weakness Is one arm weak or numb? Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?
Speech Difficulty Is speech slurred, are they unable to speak, or are they hard to understand? Ask the person to repeat a simple sentence, like "the sky is blue." Is the sentence repeated correctly?
Time to call 911 If the person shows any of these symptoms, even if the symptoms go away, call 9-1-1 and get them to the hospital immediately.
If you think someone is having a stroke, immediately call 9-1-1 so an ambulance can be sent. Also, check the time so you'll know when the first stroke symptoms appeared. A clot-busting drug called tissue plasminogen activator (TPA) may improve the chances of getting better but only if you get them help right away.
A TIA or transient ischemic attack is a "warning stroke" or "mini-stroke" that produces stroke-like symptoms. TIA symptoms usually only last a few minutes but, if left untreated, people who have TIAs have a high risk of stroke. Recognizing and treating TIA’s can reduce the risk of a major stroke.
Other Symptoms of a Stroke may include sudden numbness or weakness of the leg or legs, sudden confusion or trouble understanding, sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes, sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination, and/or sudden severe headache with no known cause.
Remember to act F.A.S.T when you think someone is having a stroke.