Stroke awareness events will be held by NHS Tayside later this month in Forfar and Dundee.
A stroke strikes every three and half minutes in the UK, so NHS Tayside is holding a series of awareness raising events across the region to support the Stroke Association’s ‘Make May Purple’ campaign.
Gail Smith, Lead Clinician, NHS Tayside Stroke Managed Clinical Network, explained: “A stroke is a brain attack that happens when the blood supply to part of your brain is cut off.
“Most people affected are over 65, but anyone can have a stroke, including children and babies. For many people a stroke happens suddenly and without warning, and often there is little time to prepare. A stroke can affect how you move, feel and think. Although everyone’s experience of a stroke is different, some of the effects are more common than others.
“The first three hours after a stroke are critical in limiting the impact on the brain. Since the Stroke Association designed the FAST test, more than 38,000 people have got to hospital sooner, saving more lives.”
The FAST acronym aims to help people to recognise the symptoms of stroke and stands for Facial weakness, Arm weakness, Speech problems, Time to call 999.
Around four in five people will have one or more FAST symptoms when having a stroke. Other symptoms include sudden loss of vision or blurred vision, sudden weakness on one side and sudden memory loss.
Most strokes can be prevented. Although you cannot change some of the things that increase your risk of stroke, like your age, there are others that you can change. There are six simple things you can do to reduce your risk:
- Manage your medical conditions such as high blood pressure or type 2 diabetes
- Stop smoking
- Drink less alcohol
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Do more exercise
- Eat a healthy diet
Events and information stands are being held at sites across NHS Tayside to help raise awareness of stroke. Dates are as follows:
- Thursday, May 12, 2016 - Ninewells Hospital concourse
- Tuesday, May 17, 2016 - Whitehills Health & Community Care Centre, Forfar
- Friday, May 20, 2016 – King Cross Health & Community Care Centre, Dundee