Save precious time - know and respond quickly to the warning signs of stroke:
Most of us have headaches or clumsy spells now and then. But the symptoms of stroke will seem unusual and come on suddenly. Call 911 if you or someone you’re with notices these unexplained, sudden warning signs:
- A feeling of numbness or weakness in your face, arm, or leg (You might notice it on one side more than the other.)
- Vision problems in one or both eyes
- Dizziness or loss of balance; difficulty walking
- Problems speaking or understanding what other people are saying
- Severe headaches without warning or explanation
Women may have the same symptoms as men, but they’ve also reported a few others. These symptoms also happen suddenly and unexpectedly:
- Pains in the face or legs
- Feeling weak all over
- Chest pain
- Shortness of breath
- Rapid heart beat
What Is a Stroke? Why Is a Stroke So Serious?
A stroke is an interruption of the blood flow to the brain. When the blood supply to a part of the brain is restricted or cut off, the affected brain cells can die. That’s why it’s so important to be treated for stroke as soon as possible. Your brain is involved in everything you do—walking, talking, stopping to smell the roses—whatever you enjoy doing. If the part of the brain involved in those activities is damaged by the stroke, you might not be able to do those things anymore. So don’t wait. Take care of your brain—Call 911.
Strokes are painless, but don’t let that stop you from getting help. And, don’t assume that if the symptoms stop before you call 911 that you’re okay. You might have had a TIA -- what’s also known as a mini-stroke. Even though you feel better, and it seems like the problem has passed, according to the National Stroke Association, 1 in 20 people who have a mini-stroke have another stroke in the next two days. Just like a stroke, a mini-stroke requires immediate care and follow-up medical treatment to control any risk factors, such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol.