Trouble Walking Or Sudden Loss Of Balance
When having a stroke, you could lose balance and coordination. Showing signs of troubled walking, you would find it hard to stand on your feet due to sudden fatigue and confusion. You feel this way because the blood supply to your brain gets blocked or reduced.
This sign is not hard to recognize. Do a simple test: make the person repeat a common phrase, for instance, “A cat with gloves catches no mice.” Is the speech slurred? Does the person say the words wrong? Sudden confused or slurred speech is a sign to take into account. If something like this happens, there is an 80% chance the individual is suffering a stroke.
Typically, what happens in a stroke is that you lose one-half (or one-quarter) of your visual field; you don’t go entirely blind. When looking straight ahead, you can’t see past midline in one direction. In other words, you lose some peripheral vision in both eyes. So, if you or someone else experiences trouble seeing, with partial loss of the field of vision, this can be a sign of a stroke.
Dizziness can be either a one-time event or a chronic problem; however, dizziness alone isn’t necessarily a sign of a stroke. Occasionally, we all get lightheaded due to stress, overworking, depression, illness, or medication, but we eventually get better. If dizziness occurs, persists, and is associated with trouble walking, loss of coordination, and difficulty in speaking, it should be considered a sign of a stroke.
There is evidence that people who experience painful headaches are at higher risk of strokes and heart disease. A sudden severe headache that comes out of nowhere with no clear cause (like stress, anxiety, or work exhaustion) should alert you to the possibility of a stroke. This occurs particularly with the hemorrhagic-type of stroke, when a blood vessel in the brain ruptures and bleeds, causing brain cell death. The pain of this kind of a headache is extreme and may be followed by vomiting in some cases. A headache may also occur with the ischemic-type of stroke.
Fatigue is a persistent symptom that affects stroke sufferers. Though everyone feels tired at some point in time, it can typically be explained by not getting enough sleep or having had a hectic day. Fatigue in those who survive a stroke is common and quite different. A sense of exhaustion and weariness that may not improve with rest could represent a sign of a stroke.
Loss of Swallowing Reflex
A decrease or loss of the swallowing reflex is a common sign of a person who is on the brink of a stroke. Many stroke sufferers report issues with swallowing their food, to the point of gagging. In fact, one study found that 65% of stroke patients developed a swallowing disorder called dysphagia. This important sign of a stroke is typically examined upon reaching the hospital. Doctors will carry out a swallow test and, upon failing it, a speech-language pathologist will be required for treatment.
Loss of Sensation
A gradual or complete loss of sensation on areas of the skin is quite typical for a person who is having a stroke. During a stroke, the brain is no longer able to receive touch, pressure and temperature signals from those body parts. This reduced sensation can be experienced in one or different parts of the body, depending upon the area of the brain that was affected. Other senses that can be equally affected are hearing, smelling, and tasting.
A feeling that you are losing your breath or your heart is fluttering is a potential sign of a stroke. Women are more susceptible to this symptom than men. The condition can become quite uncomfortable as the pressure in the brain increases as the stroke evolves. The symptoms of a stroke can be quite similar to those of a heart attack.