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Health Matters: Do you know the warning signs of stroke?

“In Canada, on average, one stroke occurs every 10 minutes”

Last week, Luke Perry, a famous Hollywood actor died from a stroke. He was only 52 and not much older than a lot of the fans that watched his breakout show Beverly Hills 90210 in the 90s.

A stroke happens when blood suddenly stops flowing to any part of your brain. The lack of blood flow damages brain cells. Strokes are also called ‘brain attacks’ because they occur quickly and require immediate treatment. Sometimes people with a stroke experience a headache, however, the stroke can also be completely painless.

While we usually associate strokes with older adults, children and young adults can also have strokes. Women also experience strokes differently than men and are at higher risk during pregnancy, menopause and when they are elderly.

What happens in the first few hours after a stroke is critical which is why the sooner you can recognize the warning signs of a stroke, the sooner you can call 9-1-1 for help.

Remember: Act FAST because the quicker you act, the more of the person you will save!

Do you know the warning signs of a stroke? Use the following acronym to help you:

FASTPicture from Heart and Stroke Foundation