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How To Spot The Symptoms Of Stroke, Plus Tips On Prevention

It’s estimated there’ll be a 59% rise in the number of people suffering a stroke over the next 20 years, according to a study by the Stroke Association.

The charity blames high blood pressure, linked to inactivity and poor diet, as well as the fact people are living longer for fuelling the rise.

Dominic Brand, director of external affairs at the Stroke Association, said we must act now “to prevent the UK from sleepwalking towards a stroke crisis”.

The charity said investing £10 million in research could save 114,000 people from having a stroke by 2035.

What is a stroke?

A stroke typically occurs when the blood supply to part of the brain is cut off. It is a serious, life-threatening medical condition which can result in death.

 Who is at risk?

Roughly 110,000 people have a stroke in the UK each year. It was the second biggest killer globally in 2015, after ischaemic heart disease, according to the World Health Organisation.

Older people are most at risk of having a stroke. However they can occur at any age – including in children.

Symptoms

One of the main symptoms of stroke, according to the NHS, is when the muscles on one side of the face droop, which results in the person not being able to smile. In some cases, the mouth or eye area might have dropped too.

People experiencing a stroke may not be able to lift both of their arms and keep them there – usually because of arm weakness or numbness.

Additionally their speech may become slurred or “garbled”. In some cases, the person may not be able to talk at all despite appearing to be awake.

If you experience any of these symptoms, it is important to act fast and call 999 immediately. Speed is key with treating stroke, and the quicker a person is able to be treated, the less chance there is of permanent damage.

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