Approximately 40 percent of people can't identify a single symptom of stroke. Learn the signs—whether it's one sign or multiple signs, the longer a stroke progresses, the more brain tissue is destroyed. Simply put, time lost is brain lost.

Did you know that stroke is a leading cause of death in the United States? Because of this, it’s important to be able to recognize the signs of stroke. Fortunately, fast treatment can reduce damage to the brain and help avoid disabilities. There are, of course, ways to prevent stroke from even happening. These include getting exercise, managing high blood pressure, maintaining a healthy weight, quitting smoking, eating foods low in sodium and added sugars, and others.

Causes of Stroke

Another name for stroke is brain attack, because a stroke is caused when blood flowing to the brain is stopped. Because the brain needs the oxygen and nutrients that the blood flow brings to the brain, this interruption causes brain cells to die without it after a few minutes. As you can imagine, changes in the brain because of this affect the way body functions.

Also, when a person has a stroke, it can be one of two different kinds, both caused by slightly different factors. An ischemic stroke occurs when a blood clot or piece of plaque blocks a major blood vessel. The other kind of stroke, a hemorrhagic stroke, occurs when a blood vessel in the brain bursts and spills blood into the surrounding brain tissue. Recovery from these strokes will depend on the size and location of the stroke.

Sometimes an individual may experience smaller strokes (ischemic strokes) and not realize it. As a matter of fact, about 87 percent of strokes are ischemic or minor strokes. Only 13 percent are hemorrhagic. This is another reason it’s important to know the signs of stroke.

Stroke Treatment

Treatment for stroke includes medications and/or life support treatments, like machines to assist breathing, IV fluids, blood pressure control, and others applied by emergency-trained personnel. Sometimes surgery may be performed to prevent a stroke or after it has occurred. The best treatment that we can apply ourselves is preventive treatment. Consult a doctor and study the signs of stroke to be prepared.

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