Fall brings much excitement and fun, and it also means the rush is on to get the crops out of the field and to the elevator or gin. Studies have shown that stress increases the risk of suffering a stroke. About 795,000 Americans each year are stroke victims. If you suspect a person is having a stroke, don’t wait to see if they start feeling better. Time is of the essence. Up to two million brain cells die every minute during a stroke. Recognizing symptoms and acting quickly to get medical attention can save a life and limit disabilities. There is a very successful clot-buster drug that can significantly reduce the effects of stroke, but it must be given within the first 3 hours of the onset of symptoms. If you observe any of the following signs of stroke, call 9-1-1 and tell the dispatcher you suspect the person is suffering a stroke:
- Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body
- Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding
- Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes
- Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination
- Sudden, severe headache with no known cause
Knowing the signs of a stroke and acting quickly could save the life of someone you know.