Stroke 101:May is Stroke Prevention Month

A stroke is a “brain attack” cutting off vital blood and oxygen to the brain cells that control everything we do-from speaking, to walking, to breathing.  Most stokes occur when arteries are blocked by blood clots or by the  gradual build up of plaque and other fatty deposits.  Some stokes can be caused by arteries rupturing when weak spots on the blood vessel wall break. Every year, strokes strike nearly 795,000 Americans, and killing 144,000 every year.

A stroke can happen to anyone at any time, regardless of race, sex, or age. Approximately 55,000 more women, then men have a stroke each year.  African Americans have almost twice the risk of first-ever stokes compared with whites.

There are 2 types of strokes, they are:

Ischemic stroke-occurs when arteries are blocked by blood clots or by the gradual build-up of plaque and other fatty deposits, about 87% of strokes are ischemic.

Hemorrhagic stroke-occurs when a blood vessel in the brain breaks leaking blood into the brain. Hemorrhagic strokes make up 13% of stokes, yet responsible for over 40% of all stroke deaths.When near someone who you think is having a stroke remember FAST. F=face, ask the person to smile, does one side droop.

A=arms, ask the person to raise both arms, does one drift downward. S=speech, ask the person to speak, is the speech slurred, T=time, if any of these occur call 911 or get the the nearest hospital.

There are many ways to lower your chances of a stroke, here are some:routine chiropractic care, keep an eye on your blood pressure, stop smoking, drink in moderation, keep an eye on your cholesterol number, control your diabetes, lower your sodium and fat diet, include exercise about 30 minutes a day or more, if you have a circulatory problem talk to you doctor about your options. If you think you or a loved one has had or having a stroke, get medical attention immediately.

And also talk to your doctor about your risks for a stroke…Remember take care of your body, and your body will take care of you.

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