According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, around 795,000 Americans have a stroke each year. It is a leading cause of both disability and death in the United States.

During American Stroke Awareness Month this May, our team at AFC Urgent Care Sevierville wants you to know what you can do to prevent a stroke, as well as how to recognize a stroke as soon as possible. Time matters!

Am I at Risk for a Stroke?

Every person is at risk for experiencing a stroke. But there are some risk factors that put you at a higher risk. Although there are some risk factors you cannot control, there are some things you can to do help reduce your stroke risk.

Risk factors for a stroke include a personal or family history of stroke, heart disease, diabetes, brain aneurysms and/or high blood pressure. Carrying excess weight, living a sedentary lifestyle, eating a poor diet and smoking also put you at a higher risk.

Symptoms of a Stroke

  • Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body
  • Confusion, trouble speaking or understanding
  • Issues seeing or having blurred vision in one or both eyes
  • Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination

Can a Person Recover from a Stroke?

Minutes matter when it comes to a stroke. The earlier a stroke is caught and treated, the best the outcome. Therefore, if you suspect someone is having a stroke, seek medical attention immediately.

Medications like tissue plasminogen activator, anticoagulants, statins and blood pressure drugs are available to help doctors restore blood flow to the brain promptly. Of course, one of the best treatments for a stroke is prevention. As a result, you want to do what you can to control what you can when it comes to your stroke risk.

Stroke Prevention Tips

  • Lower your blood pressure, if necessary.
  • Lose weight, if necessary.
  • Exercise regularly.
  • Drink alcohol only in moderation.
  • Take steps to manage conditions such as diabetes or atrial fibrillation.
  • Quit smoking.
  • Find healthy ways to manage stress.

If you or someone around you experience a stroke, call 911 for immediate medical attention. If you have non-emergency medical needs, schedule an AFC TeleCare appointment with AFC Urgent Care Sevierville today.