Know the Difference Between a TIA and an Actual Seizure
Each year approximately 800,000 people in the United States have strokes. Of this number, approximately 30 percent will die and 15-30 percent will be disabled. (2)
According to the American Heart Association and the National Stroke Association, strokes are the third largest killer in the United States, only after heart disease and cancer. People over 65 years of age have a greater chance of having a stroke and strokes are the leading cause of disability in America. More African-American Black have strokes than Whites or Hispanics. Women have a slight higher risk of dying from a stroke than a man, but men have more strokes then women. (3)
What is a Stroke
A stroke happens when a portion of the brain is damaged, due to interruption of blood flow to the brain. When this happens the mental and physical abilities are hampered. There are three different types of strokes:
- Cerebral Thrombosis - This happens when an artery to the brain is narrowed down. This can happen because of atherosclerosis, plaque or deposit of fatty tissue.
- Cerebral Embolism - This one is also a block, but happens because of a foreign material or embolus.
- Cerebral Hemorrhage - This type of stroke happens not because the artery is blocked, but due to an artery that has burst or is leaking.
Warning Signs of a Stroke
- Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body
- Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding
- Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes
- Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination
- Sudden, severe headache with no known cause
What is a TIA (Transient ischemic attack)
A TIA resembles a stroke as it has similar symptoms, but the TIA last for only a short time. Sudden numbness or weakness down one side of the body may last a few minutes or hours where in a stroke they last for over 24 hours. It is necessary to understand the difference as your life depends on this. TIAs may signal an impending stroke and should be treated with care. Nearly half of the patients who have TIAs, have a stroke within five years. (1)
Symptoms of a TIA
- Blurred or Double Vision
- Loss or use of one side.
Self-Help Measures for a Stroke and TIA
There are no self-help measures to be taken once you have a Stroke, but you may prevent another one from coming. Both stroke victims and TIA victims can make a few changes to aide in their recovery, such as having their blood pressure checked regularly, by not smoking, not eating fatty foods and exercising regularly.
Most TIA and stroke patients are usually put on an anticoagulant drug. It is imperative not to try self-diagnose oneself, but to be under the care of a doctor.
Natural Remedies for Stroke and TIA Patients
Be aware that many natural medicines cannot be taken in conjunction with pharmaceutical medicines and they may have some serious side effects. Never take natural medicines together with pharmaceutical medicines without the express authorization of your doctors.
- The American Medical Association Family Medical Guide
- The American Heart Association
- Texas Heart Association
- Family Doctor
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