CHARLESTON, WV (WOAY)- During American Stroke Month, May, the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association encourages West Virginians to join together to fight the #5 cause of death in the nation – stroke.
Despite striking more than 7 million adults in the United States annually and being a leading cause of serious, long-term disability, globally, stroke is largely preventable and treatable.
Normal blood pressure is below 120/80 mm Hg. Nearly half of all adults in the U.S. have high blood pressure, according to recent AHA/ASA Hypertension Guidelines, which redefine high blood pressure as 130/80 mm Hg. Eating healthfully, being active and, for some stroke survivors, following an aspirin regimen can help prevent another stroke.
Education is also key when it comes to treating stroke. Immediate medical care is crucial to access life-saving treatment in many cases. The American Stroke Association’s Together to End Stroke® initiative, sponsored nationally by Medtronic, teaches the acronym F.A.S.T. to help people to recognize the most common stroke warning signs and what to do if one occurs:
F – Face Drooping: Does one side of the face droop or is it numb? Ask the person to smile.
A – Arm Weakness: Is one arm weak or numb? Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?
S – Speech Difficulty: Is speech slurred, are they unable to speak, or are they hard to understand? Ask the person to repeat a simple sentence like, “The sky is blue.” Is the sentence repeated correctly?
T – Time to call 911: If the person shows any of these symptoms, even if the symptoms go away, call 911 and get them to the hospital immediately.
For more information about stroke or American Stroke Month activities, follow #StrokeMonth on social media, visit StrokeAssociation.org/strokemonth or contact the Charleston office at (681) 313-2074.