PLEASE READ – it might help save a life.

I’m sure most people reading this will be familiar with the acronym FAST in relation to recognising the symptoms of a stroke;
F is for face – has their face fallen on one side? Can they smile?
A is for arms – can they raise both arms and keep them there?
S is for speech – is their speech slurred?
T is for time – if any of these signs are present, it’s time to call 999

This is a really useful way of remembering all the signs to check for and being aware of them can help to save someones life.
But sometimes people can have a series of mini strokes which aren’t as clear and obvious to recognise. Sometimes the usual symptoms are present, but not as obviously as when someone is having a full stroke. Some other symptoms that indicate a transient ischaemic attack (TIA) /  mini stroke are:
*complete paralysis of one side of the body
*sudden loss or blurring of vision 
*dizziness
*difficulty understanding what others are saying
*problems with balance and co-ordination 
*difficulty swallowing (dysphagia)

The reason I really want people to read this post is because not only has my great-gran (mentioned in previous posts) suffered from a stroke, but also my Auntie Sheila, my Uncle Harry a few years ago and most recently- yesterday (31.07.15) – my Grandad. For definite my Grandad had been experiencing symptoms of a TIA but none of us had realised, we simply thought he was feeling dizzy. He got taken into hospital after having gone dizzy whilst out shopping, his condition deteriorated and then improved. But unfortunately we got a call from the hospital saying that overnight he had suffered a stroke, and he is now in hospital receiving the treatment he needs.
I’ll talk about him more in an upcoming post and will outline exactly what happened, his condition and the treatment he is receiving. But this post was really about making people aware of the other signs and symptoms- the more people aware, the more people can be saved. Clearly sometimes people will experience some of these symptoms without it being a sign of a TIA or a stroke and I don’t want anyone to worry. But if you are ever concerned at all then please just go and make sure everything is okay. Thank you so much for taking the time to read this.

(Any information I didn’t know I found out from the NHS website, which provides full details of causes, signs and symptoms of strokes and all other illnesses)

P.S. keep a look out in the next few weeks for any of my fundraisers. One was already planned before Grandad had his stroke but the rest have been added on for him, raising money and awareness for the Stroke Association.

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