Is anybody around you suffering from sudden spells of weakness or difficulty in speaking?
Have you noticed a slight slump or numbness on one side of their body?
The above things might appear to be trivial and can get ignored but be aware as these are all stroke signs and symptoms. Without proper and immediate stroke treatment, the patient might suffer from heart attack which can be life threatening.
These symptoms are very sudden and one has to act fast to dodge a heart attack. Heart attack, even if treated, takes a toll on the patient’s health and it takes many years to recover from it, on top of it, the threat of a second heart attack is always looming on the patient.
Hence it is imperative to take all steps of stroke prevention and maintain a healthy heart.
In this article we’ll discuss various causes, symptoms and risk factors for strokes. Let us firs look at what stroke actually means.
What is Stroke?
Stroke is a condition when blood supply to a part of the brain is interrupted, leading to inadequate oxygen supply due to which the brain cell dies. This condition is also referred as cerebrovascular accident (CVA).
The causes of stroke may differ from one individual to another
Causes of Stroke
- Blockage of arteries or arterioles in a part of brain may suspend the supply of blood and glucose and thereby leads to neuron death.
- Even thickening of arterial walls also lowers the supply of blood to brain i.e. a condition called atherosclerosis.
- Thrombosis is one of the major causes for stroke, where there is a formation of blood clot at any position in the brain and blood supply to the brain cells gets hindered. Thrombosis may lead to rupture of small capillaries.
- Embolism can also be a cause, where the blood clot is formed in any other organ like heart becomes an obstruction to the blood flow in the brain.
- Cerebral haemorrhage where blood vessels rupture and blood leaks into brain causing oxygen deprivation to some cells and it can also cause cerebral oedema as the blood is irritating in the brain.
- Vasculitis is another rare cause of stroke that is caused due to inflammation of the blood vessels which decreases the blood flow to the brain tissue.
- Even migraine headaches can also be a cause for strokes as there is narrowing of brain blood vessels. Some symptoms of migraine also mimic stroke symptoms.
The Risk Factors of Stroke
There are many factors which elevate the chances of stroke. The factors which cause heart attack are very similar to the risk factors of stroke. The following are the major factors causing heart attack
- High blood pressure
- High cholesterol
- Any heart problems like atrial fibrillation
- Very rarely, it might also be inherited.
Now that we know the risk factors and causes of heart attack, let’s look at the symptoms of stroke.
Common Stroke Symptoms
- Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg especially on one side of the body.
- The loss of voluntary movement, this sensation may be complete or partial. Patient might feel a tingling sensation in the affected area.
- Sudden trouble in speaking or understanding and trouble in the sight of one or both the eyes.
- Sometimes the weakness in the muscles of the face can cause drooling.
- Sudden trouble in walking, dizziness, or loss of balance or coordination.
- Severe headache with no apparent cause.
It is very important to seek medical attention as soon as these symptoms are spotted so that the patient receives proper treatment for stroke. In case of stroke, the sooner the patient receives the treatment is better as there is a continuous process of brain damage.
Many times, the condition becomes serious due to lack of timely treatment. The patients mostly wait till the first big stroke before consulting the doctor but you should be aware of the fact that stroke patients suffer several mini strokes before getting the big stroke and a lot of damage is already done.
There are some stroke medicines which are anti-clotting agents to free the blocked artery, but it can only be successful if administered on time.
So, do remember and act swiftly when you encounter such incident. Also remember that prevention is better than cure. Healthy practices and timely health check-ups can help you stay away from stroke.
Take care of your health and heart and be aware as once health is lost its very difficult to recover.
Please share your queries and experiences with us in the comment section below and also share this information with your loved ones.
Photo Courtesy: drimanfirmansyah.files, static-img-a.hgcdn.net