When it comes to getting help when someone is having a stroke, time is of the essence. During a stroke, a person loses 1.9 million neurons every minute that goes by. Every hour that passes without treatment ages the brain about three and a half years. Without immediate treatment, adverse effects can occur, like memory loss, speech challenges, and cognitive decline.
5. Getting Immediate Treatment for a Stroke
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), patients who received treatment within three hours of the start of a stroke often have fewer disabilities than people who delayed emergency treatment. Unfortunately, many people delay getting help because they deny, ignore, or are not aware of stroke symptoms. Only 38% of people who received treatment for a stroke were aware of all major stroke symptoms.
When a stroke occurs, the brain is affected. Because the brain controls our movements, memories, and language, a stroke impacts the ability to speak, move, and think. The brain uses 20% of the body’s oxygen. During a stroke, the brain can’t get enough oxygen, and this starts to impact movement, thought, and speech.
A stroke is not something to ignore. The sooner a person gets their stroke treated, the better. People who fail to recognize or who deny stroke symptoms risk having lasting effects from their episode. People who delay treatment often state they were “waiting” to see if the symptoms would go away. Here are four common mistakes people make when spotting stroke symptoms.
4. Slurred Speech
When some stroke victims find themselves slurring their speech, they might blame it on their medications. It’s true that some medications, like painkillers and anti-anxiety medication, can cause slurred speech. However, if it’s not the first time a person has taken the medication, and they’ve never experienced slurred speech with that medication in the past, then the slurring is probably not due to the medication. If you or someone you know is slurring their speech, especially if they also have facial drooping, it’s time to call 911.