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Caregiving Tip: Act FAST - Recognizing and Responding to a Stroke

May 31, 2018 by Comfort Keepers Newark, DE

A stroke is a serious medical event can cause incredible damage to a person’s brain, thereby affecting their quality of life for the rest of their years. Knowing how to recognize and respond to a stroke can not only save a person's life but greatly increase their chances of a full recovery.

What is a Stroke?

Formally called a cerebrovascular accident, a stroke is damage to the brain caused by blood supply being interrupted to it.

There are two ways this can happen, and therefore two categories of stroke: hemorrhagic and ischemic.

A hemorrhagic stroke involves a hemorrhage, or rupture, to a blood vessel. This causes blood to leak out of the wound, meaning it does not flow to where it’s supposed to go in the brain.

An ischemic stroke occurs when a blood vessel becomes clogged, which dams up the blood and also prevents it from reaching the brain.

A third form of stroke is called a transient ischemic attack, or TIA. These appear to be full-blown strokes, but the signs and symptoms subside shortly thereafter. However, because a TIA is caused by a temporary blood clot, this can mean there’s a risk of a full stroke in the future, so it’s important to seek medical treatment immediately anyways.


The key to treating a stroke is to act fast, as the more time the brain spends without blood flow, the more damage is being done.

Coincidentally, the acronym F.A.S.T. is used to look for signs of a stroke:

  • F: Face. Does it look like one side of their face is normal, while the other side is drooping?
  • A: Arms. Is one of their arms noticeably weak? You can test this by having them stand up, hold their arms out, and close their eyes. Does one arm lower?
  • S: Speech. Do they have slurred speech or are having a hard time talking?
  • T: Time. If you answered yes to any of these, it’s time to call 911. Also note the time you noticed these symptoms and relay it to the first responders.

After-Care: Get Professional Help

As a concerned loved one, you want the best for them after they receive care for the stroke.

A great way to ensure they’re receiving the best care they can on the road to recovery is by hiring a caregiver.

Comfort Keepers is committed to serving the elderly population and their variety of needs, including post-stroke care. This way, your senior can remain living at home while getting the help they need.

Call our Comfort Keepers office at (715) 690-3400 today and set up a consultation for finding the perfect caregiver for your loved one.

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