Ahead of World Stroke Day on October 29th the Trust is urging everyone to be aware the early signs of stroke. If someone is having a stroke they are more likely to have better outcomes the quicker they get help.

Dr Paul Davies, a Consultant Stroke Physician at North Cumbria Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust, has shared some advice on how to spot the signs of a stroke as well as how you can prevent having a stroke.

He said:

“As we get older our arteries harden and they are more likely to become blocked. Those with certain medical conditions are more at risk but there are lots of things we can all do to prevent having a stroke. Cutting down on alcohol, stopping smoking, eating a healthy balanced diet, maintaining a healthy weight and being as physically active as you can are all well within our control and will all reduce your stroke risk quite a lot.”

If you already smoke, are overweight or have any of the risk factors your GP can give you advice about checks you need.

The stroke association advise that those over 40 should have a regular check up with your GP as this will pick up on any problems. If you're black or from a South Asian family, you can have a diabetes check from the age of 25.

Dr Davies also shared information about how you can recognise the signs of a person having a stroke – if you suspect a stroke you should call 999 so that they can get treatment as quickly as possible.

The main stroke symptoms can be remembered with the word FAST:

  • Face – the face may have dropped on 1 side, the person may not be able to smile, or their mouth or eye may have drooped.Dr Paul Davies.PNG
  • Arms – the person may not be able to lift both arms and keep them there because of weakness or numbness in 1 arm.
  • Speech – their speech may be slurred or garbled, or the person may not be able to talk at all despite appearing to be awake; they may also have problems understanding what you're saying to them.
  • Time – it's time to dial 999 immediately if you notice any of these signs or symptoms.

Dr Davies explains what to do to prevent stroke and also signs of a stroke in this video.

Stroke services at the Trust regularly receive good feedback and the Trust will soon be taking part in a national survey to find out what patients think about our stroke care. It’s in partnership with the Stroke Association and all NHS stroke patients who received treatment and/or therapy between 16/05/22 and 16/09/22 will receive a copy of the survey.

Participation is voluntary and is part of a national programme to improve stroke patients’ experiences. For more information please visit https://www.stroke.org.uk/prems2022

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