This is Stroke Week
The theme for this year’s National Stroke Week (8 – 14 August) is, ‘celebrating and enjoying the precious moments that you or your loved ones can continue to enjoy, during and after your recovery from stroke’.
While there are some risk factors for stroke which can’t be avoided, like age, gender, family history and prior stroke, it is estimated that more than 80 per cent of strokes can be prevented, simply by managing these risk factors and living a healthy lifestyle.
Australians are encouraged to take charge of their own health with these steps:
- Eat well
- Stay active
- Be smoke free
- Moderate alcohol intake
- Visit your doctor for regular health checks to help manage blood pressure, type 2 diabetes and atrial fibrillation (irregular heart beat)
One way Northern Health is helping stroke survivors to return home to be with their families as soon as possible, is by providing rehabilitation at home through the Early Stroke Discharge Program.
This program allows patients to work on recovering and regaining their independence at home, instead of staying in hospital for rehabilitation.
Mr Tony Grinstead, pictured above with physiotherapist, Shalini Jayasekera, was recently discharged with therapy after his stroke, rather than staying for inpatient rehabilitation.
“I had all the support and equipment I needed, and everything went very smoothly. You feel better at home – you sleep better and have your family beside you. I think this definitely helped me get back to walking by myself more quickly,” Mr Grinstead said.
Sharing the FAST signs of stroke message with your family and friends is another important way of helping others keep enjoying life’s precious moments. The FAST signs help to recognise and respond quickly to the signs of stroke.
Think of F.A.S.T. and ask these questions if you suspect a stroke:
😕 Face – Check their face. Has their mouth drooped?
💪 Arms – Can they lift both arms?
🗨️ Speech – Is their speech slurred? Do they understand you?
⌛ Time – Time is critical. If you see any of these signs, call triple zero (000) straight away.