Did you know that high blood pressure is the leading risk factor for stroke? According to the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, about 77% of people who have a stroke have blood pressure higher than 140/90 mm Hg. Although stroke is the leading cause of long-term disability in the United States, it is largely preventable, treatable, and beatable. Talk to your healthcare provider about your risk factors and prevention strategies that will work best for you.
LEARN HOW TO SPOT A STROKE
The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association created F.A.S.T., as an easy way to remember the sudden signs of stroke. When you can spot the signs, you’ll know that you need to call 9-1-1 for help right away. F.A.S.T. is:
F Face Drooping
Does one side of the face droop or is it numb? Ask the person to smile. Is the person’s smile uneven?
A Arm Weakness
Is one arm weak or numb? Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?
S Speech Difficulty
Is speech slurred? Is the person unable to speak or hard to understand? Ask the person to repeat a simple sentence, like “The sky is blue.” Is the sentence repeated correctly?
T Time to call 9-1-1
If someone shows any of these symptoms, even if the symptoms go away, call 9-1-1 and get the person to the hospital immediately. Check the time so you’ll know when the first symptoms appeared.