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A Closer Look at Strokes

Stroke is the third largest killer of Canadian adults, after heart disease and cancer. It’s also the primary cause of physical disabilities and is second only to Alzheimer’s disease as a cause of mental disability. While people at any age can be susceptible to suffering from a stroke, nearly three-quarters of strokes occur in people over the age of 65.

Women are disproportionately affected by stroke: 45% more women die of stroke than men in Canada, and because they live longer, more women are living with the effects of stroke

Risk factors for a stroke include high blood pressure, genetics, gender, tobacco use, heart disease, diabetes, weight, age and the use of some medications.

There are three main types of stroke that can occur:

Ischemic stroke – Most strokes fall into this category. In an ischemic stroke, arteries narrow or are blocked, reducing blood flow to the brain.

Hemorrhagic stroke – During a hemorrhagic stroke, a blood vessel leaks or bursts, causing damage.

Transient ischemic attack – Sometimes referred to as “mini-strokes,” this is a condition that is also caused by a narrowing of the arteries, but only causes temporary symptoms.

It’s important to note that medical attention after a stroke is critical, and time is of the essence. Anyone suffering from the symptoms of a stroke should not wait for the effects to go away or get worse. They should call 9-1-1 or visit their physician as soon as possible. Quick treatment can minimize damage and potentially save someone’s life.

Symptoms can include:

  • Trouble speaking
  • Confusion or trouble understanding
  • Paralysis of the face, arms or legs
  • Trouble seeing
  • Headache
  • Trouble walking
  • Headache
  • Vomiting
  • Neck stiffness
  • Dizziness

 

Comfort Keepers® Can Help

Whether the goal is healthy living to prevent strokes, or recovery after, Comfort Keepers can help. Our caregivers can provide wellness support, remind clients to take medication, provide transportation to scheduled appointments, and support physician-prescribed exercise regimens and diets. As part of an individualized care plan, caregivers can let a senior’s care team know if there are changes in behavior or physical characteristics. Our goal is to see that clients have the means to find the joy and happiness in each day, regardless of age or acuity.

To learn more about our in-home care services, contact your local Comfort Keepers location today.

 

References

WebMD. “Top Causes of Stroke.” Web. 2017.

Mayo Clinic. “Stoke” Web.2019.

Healthline. “Massive Stroke” Web. 2018.

Center for Disease Control and Prevention. “Stroke.” Web.

Canada.com.  “Stroke”. Web 2018.

Heart and Stroke Foundation.  “Stroke Report 2019.”  Web. 2019.

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