The following patient safety guest post on stroke prevention was submitted by Ireland based Home Care Plus.
Did you know that there are six stroke-related deaths in the world every single minute? Indeed, somewhere on Earth, a person suffers a stroke every two seconds. It is frightening to think of how frequently strokes happen, especially when the likelihood of suffering one can be minimized with just a few simple lifestyle changes.
Home Care Plus, an Irish-based provider of home care services, has created this excellent infographic which provides hugely important information on recognizing the warning signs of stroke, understanding the factors that increase the risk of stroke, and how to provide care for a victim of stroke.
Time is a critical factor in responding to a stroke, so much so that swift, correct action can prove the difference between life and death. If you see somebody with a notable weakness on one side of their body, slurring their speech or finding it difficult to maintain balance, these could be signs of a stroke. Check to see if their face is falling to one side or if one arm is numb, and also ask the person to recite a simple sentence. If one or more of these warning signs is prevalent, contact the emergency services immediately.
Also, if you know of a friend or family member with high stress levels or a poor diet, or if they’re a regular smoker and/or get little to no exercise, gently advise them that they are putting themselves at risk of suffering a stroke. Of course it isn’t easy to tell a person that they should lose weight or obtain regular exercise, but it’s certainly a preferable alternative to needing to provide constant care for them after they’ve suffered a stroke. Given the frequency with which strokes happen, we simply cannot take a chance that it won’t happen to us or to someone we know and love.