How to Spot a Stroke

In conjunction with World Stroke Day on 29 October, learn more about how to spot a stroke and ways to lower the risk of having one.

Stroke is the leading cause of disability in adults and the fourth most common cause of death in Singapore. Early detection and treatment can help to reduce the long-term effects of the condition. In conjunction with World Stroke Day on 29 October, learn more about how to spot a stroke and ways to lower the risk of having one.

What is a Stroke?

Stroke occurs when the blood supply to the brain is interrupted or reduced. This causes brain cells to die and damage the neurological function of the brain. There are two more common types of stroke:

  • Ischaemic stroke – the most common type of stroke, caused by blocked vessels which limit the blood flow to the brain
  • Haemorrhagic stroke – caused by the rupture of a blood vessel that results in blood clot in the brain
Ischaemic stroke caused by blocked vessels and haemorrhagic stroke caused by rupture of blood vessels are two most common types of stroke (Picture: Shutterstock)
Ischaemic stroke caused by blocked vessels and haemorrhagic stroke caused by rupture of blood vessels are two most common types of stroke (Picture: Shutterstock)

How to Spot a Stroke

To spot the symptoms of stroke, remember to act F.A.S.T

F (Face) – Is the person’s face drooping on one side?

A (Arm) – Can the person raise both arms? Does one arm drift downwards?

S (Speech) – Does the person’s speech sound slurred or strange?

T (Time) – If the person shows any of the F.A.S signs, time to call 995!

Watch the F.A.S.T video here: You Can Spot a Stroke

How to Reduce the Risk of Having a Stroke

High blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, smoking and excessive alcohol intake are risk factors for stroke. Leading a healthy lifestyle can help lower the odds of it occurring. Here are some tips:

  • Manage cholesterol levels
  • Monitor blood pressure
  • Keep track of blood sugar levels
  • Eat a healthy diet by managing food intake – including more fruits and vegetables and reducing sugar and salt consumption
  • Exercise regularly
  • Sleep well and having enough rest
  • Maintain a healthy body weight
  • Don’t smoke
  • Go for regular health screenings for early detection and treatment
Nine ways to reduce the risk of stroke (Picture: S3 Stroke Support Station)
Nine ways to reduce the risk of stroke (Picture: S3 Stroke Support Station)

Prevention is better than cure, so start by maintaining a healthy lifestyle today!

References:

  1. Stroke, SingHealth, Dec 2018
  2. Stroke Hub, Healthhub
  3. 9 Steps to Prevent Stroke, S3 Stroke Support Station
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