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Strokes are Silent Killers: New Campaign Aims to Spread Awareness

Update Date: Feb 20, 2013 04:41 PM EST

Strokes are silent and deadly killers and are often unrecognized by the victims. Since people may not know the symptoms, strokes become ignored which can jeopardize health dramatically. According to the Cleveland Clinic, an American suffers from a stroke every 40 seconds and roughly 28% of these Americans do not realize that they had experienced a life threatening situation. Strokes are linked to several deadly cardiovascular diseases and occur when blood vessels bursts or become blocked in the brain. 

People who experience strokes should ideally be taken to the hospital immediately to prevent further damage to the human body. However, that is not always the case which prompted the American Heart Association, American Stroke Association, and the Ad Council to come together and find ways to spread awareness. If people learn more about the symptoms of a stroke, they can provide better care for themselves and their loved ones. Strokes should ideally always be addressed. 

The joint groups' campaign is entitled Stroke Awareness and they have developed the acronym, FAST, where F stands for face dropping, A for arm weakness, S for speech difficulty, and T for time to call 911. These are the four main symptoms that a occur once a stroke has attacked the body. The campaign believes that if people are aware of these symptoms, they will have more time to react and receive help. Every second saved can help the body from being further damages. 

Not only is knowing the signs vital in stroke prevention, learning about the risks behind strokes is important as well. The cardiovascular disease, atrial fibrillation, a common condition in which the heart suffers from an irregular heartbeat, can increase the risk of stokes by five times. Other factors include obesity, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, heavy drinking habits, and smokers. Strokes can have damaging effects on one's mental processes and physical movements, ruining lifestyles forever, and thus, knowing the signs and addressing the situation is key in stopping the damages early. 

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