How to Spot a Stroke F.A.S.T.
According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), more than 759,000 people in the United States suffer from a stroke every year. While the risk of having a stroke increases with age, strokes can happen at any age. Use the acronym “F.A.S.T.” to spot the signs of a stroke quickly. In the event of a stroke, it’s important to get to the nearest certified stroke center or emergency room as quickly as possible to reduce the risk of fatality or long-term disability.
F - Face Drooping
Individuals experiencing a stroke will oftentimes have one side of their face begin to droop. Ask the person to smile and note any variation from one side to the other, which could be a sign of a stroke.
A - Arm Weakness
One common sign of a stroke is arm weakness or numbness. Ask the individual to raise both arms up and see if one arm begins to drop.
S - Speech Difficulty
When individuals suffer a stroke, their speech is often impaired. Ask the individual to repeat a short phrase and if the speech is slurred or strange, they could be experiencing a stroke.
T - Time to Call 9-1-1
If you or someone you know is exhibiting the symptoms of stroke above, it is important to act quickly and call 911 or get to the nearest hospital immediately.
Recognizing these symptoms early could save someone’s life. Time lost equals brain lost, so it is important when you recognize the signs of a stroke to think F.A.S.T. and seek immediate emergency care.