Did you know that stroke is the leading cause of death and disability among adults in Canada? However, since 1952, the cardiovascular death rate in Canada has declined more than 75%, with a further decline of 40% in the last decade. These numbers are massive and mainly due to research and prevention efforts. They say “knowledge is power” and to know the signs of stroke and when to get medical help is extremely critical to save a life and to limit the negative effects of a stroke.
The Canadian Heart and Stroke Foundation says “Act FAST”. Don’t Hesitate. Be prepared for stroke.
F ace is drooping?
A rms can you raise both?
S peech is it slurred or jumbled?
T ime to call 9-1-1 right away.
1.9 brain cells die every minute while having a stroke. If you can remember the acronym FAST, this will help you help others by getting medical care quickly which will limit the damage a stroke may cause. By calling 911 and getting an ambulance, you will get to the hospital quickly as well as you will get to the appropriate place to receive specialized care, which will limit the chance of death and damage to the brain significantly.
- Stroke can happen at ANY age!
- 62,000 strokes occur in Canada each year; this is one stroke every nine minutes.
- 82% of those who have a stroke and make it to the hospital will survive.
- 40% of patients who are eligible to receive clot-busting drugs arrive at the hospital within the 4.5 hour window to receive treatment.
- The youngest patients are in their 20’s and 30’s take the longest to get to the hospital.
At Aim2Walk we see many clients who have had a stroke. Each case is different, however many resulting issues are similar. A client may have hemiplegia, meaning one side is paralysed. If you have had a stroke, learning how to regain function with your body is possible with the help of a professional. The majority of our clients will regain function with their affected leg because they are forced to use it and to walk on it each day. Unfortunately it is less common to have full hand function return and perhaps this is due to less attempts to use this limb as often. Regaining function is hard work and constant. Although therapy is very important, you will only see real gains if you continue with home therapy as often as possible.
June is Stroke awareness month and we are reminding everyone the importance of getting help ASAP if you are having a stroke. Please remember the acronym FAST and know the signs and symptoms of a stroke to get help FAST.