When someone experiences a stroke, every second counts. Witnessing your loved one having a stroke is a frightening experience, especially when you are unaware of what to do. Therefore, this blog is dedicated to the signs of a stroke and a list of do’s and don’ts to ensure a prompt and effective response.
Signs of a Stroke
Remember, during a stroke episode, it is best to respond FAST!
F-Face: Identify if there is numbness, weakness, or a tingling sensation on one side of your face.
A-Arms: Check for visible weakness in the upper limbs.
S-Speech: Observe if the patient has slurred speech, difficulty finding words, or the inability to talk properly.
T-Time: Act immediately and seek emergency treatment.
Other Symptoms Include
Apart from the FAST signs, here is what you should look for:
- Sudden loss of vision
- Severe headache
What to Do When Someone Is Experiencing a Stroke?
- Call an Ambulance: Instead of driving to the hospital, call 911. An ambulance can reach your location faster, and paramedics are equipped to handle various emergencies.
- Use the Word “Stroke”: When contacting emergency services, tell the operator you suspect a stroke. This way, paramedics and the hospital staff are better prepared to assist the person.
- Track the Symptoms: Your patient may not be able to communicate; therefore, provide as much information as possible. Take note of the symptoms, their onset time, and any pre-existing medical conditions like high blood pressure.
- Talk to the Person: While waiting for the ambulance, gather information from the person experiencing the stroke.
- Encourage Lying Down: Urge the patient to lie down on their side with their head elevated to promote blood flow to the brain.
- Perform CPR, if needed: Sometimes, loss of consciousness during a stroke may happen. Check if they’re still breathing and feel for a pulse. If there’s no pulse, initiate CPR.
- Stay Calm: Though challenging, remain calm throughout the process. A calm state of mind makes communicating with the 911 operator easier.
Administer Medication: While aspirin might seem like a good option, refrain from giving it to someone experiencing a stroke. A stroke can be caused by a blood clot or a burst blood vessel in the brain, and without knowing the type, administering medication could worsen bleeding.
Provide Food or Drink: Avoid making the patient eat or drink any food or water. Muscle weakness and paralysis are common stroke effects, and difficulty swallowing could lead to choking.
At Emergency Hospital Systems, we have the tools to help with emergency situations like these; call our team to help. Dial (281) 592-5410 to learn more today.