The information posted in the blog about Strokes is for information purposes only. If you want to learn to recognize and treat a Stroke take first aid training in Vancouver with Vancouver First Aid. Strokes are covered in detail in our Standard First Aid training courses.
Definition: Similar to a Heart Attack, a stroke occurs when the brain does not receive enough blood and oxygen and brain damage ensues. The lack of blood and oxygen can be caused by internal bleeding or by a blockage in a artery that brings blood to the brain.
Victims to strokes often suffer permanent loss of function and mental disabilities from a stroke. Early recognition and treatment can help prevent and promote the recovery of the victim.
Signs and Symptoms of Strokes:
- Weakness and numbness in the face or arm or leg.
- Impaired speech or difficulty speaking.
- Loss of muscle control on one side of the body.
- Difficulty balancing. Balance problems.
- Poor coordination.
- Loss of consciousness.
- Vision problems.
- Difficulty moving / walking.
Treatment for Strokes:
- Contact E.M.S.
- Monitor vitals and keep airway open.
- Help place victim into a comfortable position which is often the semi-sitting position. Rescuer may also place victim into recovery position to assist if there are any airway problems. Stroke side down in recovery position promotes better circulation but can be uncomfortable. Stroke patients often describe that position as feeling as if they are floating in the air. Stroke side up in the recovery position is much more comfortable but does not allow for the same circulation benefits as the stroke side down position.
- Assist the victim to take any medication prescribed by the doctor. Rescuer MAY NOT administer medication but may assist victim in taking medication. DO NOT promote the victim to take medication from another person. Any medication choices may only be made by trained doctors, paramedics or the victim him/herself.
- An unhealthy lifestyle with high blood pressure, high cholesterol and smoking can increase chances of having a Stroke.
- Victim may suffer a T.I.A prior to a stroke as TIA’s may be precursors to a Stroke.
If you want to receive hands on, no pressure training take one of many first aid classes with Vancouver First Aid. Vancouver First Aid is affiliated with the Red Cross and the Lifesaving Society.