May 9, 2018 by Comfort Keepers La Mirada
Know the Signs and Symptoms of a Stroke
As the blood supply of the brain becomes reduced or cut off, a stroke often occurs. Most often, strokes happen as a result of a sudden blockage of the arteries that deliver blood back to the brain, but occasionally a stroke occurs because of brain tissue bleeding from a burst blood vessel. As a serious medical emergency, a stroke can potentially cause disability or death. The good news is that strokes can be treated and sometimes prevented. Therefore, it’s a must for all adults, and especially anyone working in home care services, to understand the FAST signs and symptoms of a stroke. Less Americans now die from strokes because of medical advances, so be aware of the most common stroke symptoms. We’ve created a list below, in support of American Stroke Awareness Month.
Check Arms, Legs, and Face for Problems
Is there a sudden numbness, weakness or paralysis in the arm, leg, or face? It might even be seen on one side of the body. If you are working with someone in home care, it may indicate a stroke. Ask if both arms can be lifted overhead at the same time. If one arm cannot lift, get emergency help.
Speaking Erratically or Difficulty Understanding
When someone in home care services, suddenly experiences confusion, has slurred speech, or difficulty understanding what you’re saying, get help quickly.
A stroke can create blurred, blackened or double vision, either in one eye, or both. This is another symptom to be aware of.
Get treatment quickly for a sudden intense headache, especially if accompanied by dizziness, vomiting or a seemingly altered consciousness.
People in home care services who are victims of a stroke may noticeably stumble, get dizzy, lose their balance and seem generally uncoordinated and will need quick assistance.
The FAST Test
Use the FAST test to help determine whether someone in home care services might be suffering from a stroke and get help immediately. FAST stands for:
F-Face: Ask the person to smile to see if one side of their face droops.
A-Arms: Ask the potential stroke victim to raise both arms. Determine if one arm drifts down.
S-Speech: Ask the person you’re concerned about to repeat a simple sentence to see if their speech is okay.
T-Time: When observing any of these signs, call 911 for immediate medical attention that could potentially save a life.