We have way too much to do to see any warning signs. As women, we are busy on the nurturing train of life and not a day goes by that we aren’t taking care of someone else. No time to stop, let alone heed any possible health risks. This is a major health issue for women and it’s time to take notice that our bodies are in overload mode and in danger of going off-track.
The statistics speak for themselves: one in five women will have a stroke in her lifetime, nearly 60% of stroke deaths are in women and it is the third leading cause of death for women. The alarming numbers should be a wake-up call for us, but sometimes we are our own worst enemy when it comes to taking care of our health.
What is a Stroke?
A stroke is a medical emergency! Stroke happens when blood stops flowing to any part of the brain, it’s sometimes called a “Brain Attack.” Strokes can be large or small and the effects of stroke depend on the part of the brain affected and extent of damage. It’s important to learn the signs of a stroke:
- Face - is it drooping?
- Arms - can you raise both?
- Speech - is it slurred or jumbled?
- Time to call 9-1-1- right away
Why are we more at risk?
- High Blood Pressure is a main risk factor for stroke, but nearly one in three women with high blood pressure doesn’t know she has it.
- Stroke increases with age, and women live longer than men.
- The percentage of strokes in women aged 45 and younger is increasing according to the Centers for Disease Control.
- Younger women have a different set of symptoms than those over age 46.
- Having high blood pressure during pregnancy raises a woman’s risk for stroke.
- Certain types of birth control medicines may raise stroke risk in women with high blood pressure, especially if they smoke.
- Women are twice as likely as men to experience depression and anxiety.
The good news
About 80% of strokes can be prevented. The American Heart Association recommends following “Life’s Simple 7” to achieve ideal health:
- Don’t smoke
- Be physically active
- Eat a healthy diet
- Maintain a healthy body weight
- Control cholesterol
- Control blood pressure
- Control blood sugar
Take the action train
We can’t help but worry, it’s built into our DNA, but the time has come to take the action train for yourself. Talk to your doctor about stroke awareness, and ways to improve your life for better health.
The information on this site is intended to raise awareness and understanding of specific health issues. It should not be used for diagnosis or a substitute for health care by your physician.