Each year, about 795,000 strokes occur ? and it?s estimated that 8 out of 10 of those strokes could be prevented. Stroke awareness is a major factor to stroke prevention. While stroke centers offer excellent care once a stroke has happened, ideally we should be aware of what causes strokes and how we can prevent them. Of course, there are some risk factors that can?t be avoided ? age, ethnicity, and genetics being among them. But others often require something as simple as a lifestyle change, and when it comes to something as devastating as a stroke, you?ll feel better knowing that you?ve taken all the precautions you can.
Risk Factor: Inactivity And Obesity
A recommendation often made to those who have suffered a stroke is weight loss or an increase in activity. Unfortunately, inactivity ? which in turn can lead to obesity ? is a major risk factor for stokes. It?s estimated that less than 5% of adults take part in the recommended minimum of 30 minutes of activity a day, and 7 out of 10 adults don?t bother exercising regularly at all. You may not immediately think of inactivity as a dangerous ?risk?, but in fact it?s the fourth leading contributing factor to global mortality.
Risk Factor: Heart Conditions
In the past, some have even mistaken the symptoms of a stroke for a heart attack, with some stroke centers seeing people who originally thought they were suffering heart attacks. Cardiac care is not only important due to heart attack prevention concerns, but because it can also prevent a stroke. Remember that strokes are essentially the result of the blood flow to the brain being cut short, and sometimes that can relate directly to heart problems. If you don?t want to be a stroke patient, then you may want to think about taking care of your heart first. Furthermore, if you?ve already dealt with a heart condition, be vigilant about monitoring your health.
Risk Factor: Substance Abuse
A common reason why stroke centers caution people against using substances legal and illegal ? from cigarettes to alcohol to narcotics ? is that they are heavily linked to stroke occurrence. Of course, these also have to do with heart problems, which as mentioned above, are connected to your risk of stroke. Cigarettes and alcohol in particular, while often dismissed as ?safer? than illegal substances, can cause just as many problems and in some ways are more dangerous because of their easy accessibility. It?s up to you to take care of your body, and make informed decisions using what you know.
Strokes are not entirely avoidable, but you can certainly minimize your risk of getting one. And really, if you can make your risk of stroke a bit smaller, why wouldn?t you? It?s all reward, and ? in this case ? no risk.