Although a stroke is the fifth leading cause of death in the US, very few people understand how to recognize the signs and symptoms. Some risk factors such as such as age, race, and heredity can’t be changed. However, with the right knowledge, risk factors can be addressed and 80% of strokes can be prevented.

Types of stroke

A stroke occurs when the brain’s blood supply is severely reduced or completely stopped. This causes brain cells to become damaged or die due to lack of oxygen. Because the brain becomes severely damaged without oxygen, it is important to act quickly. A stroke can cause long-term damage, disability, and even death.  

Here are the different types of strokes:

Ischemic Stroke – This type of stroke occurs when a fatty plaque clot or mass clogs a blood vessel and stops blood flow to brain cells.

Hemorrhagic Stroke – This type of stroke occurs when a damaged or weakened vessel ruptures and bleeds out into the surrounding brain tissue. The blood gathers and forms a bruise which compresses the brain cells and causes them to die.

TIA (Transient Ischemic Attack) – A TIA is a medical emergency. It is referred to as a “mini stroke” and mimics the symptoms of a stroke. It is caused by a temporary clot and does not cause permanent damage to the brain. However, about 15% of all strokes happen after a TIA occurs.

Stroke Types 2018


How to spot a stroke

Symptoms of a stroke are reflected in the areas of the body controlled by the damaged brain cells. Remember to act F.A.S.T to reduce the damage caused by a stroke.

Courtesy of

Courtesy of

Learn to manage the risk factors

Although not all risk factors are preventable, there are many that can be addressed to minimize the possibility of experiencing a stroke. Along with monitoring your overall health, visit a physician to do a yearly health exam.

  • Manage high blood pressure – HBP is the leading cause of strokes and is highly controllable.
  • Control cholesterol
  • Eat a healthy diet
  • Be active and maintain a healthy weight
  • Manage diabetes and control blood sugar
  • Do not smoke

Recognizing Stroke Signs

At a recent Aspen Senior Care in-service caregivers learned the importance of recognizing stroke signs early.  According to the Centers for Disease Control, stroke is the fifth leading cause of death in the United States. Learning to recognizing stroke signs and and the symptoms of tertiary ischemic attack (also known as mini stroke or TIA’s) can help increase the chances of survival and limit side-effects.

Recognizing stoke signs early can save lives.

Symptoms of stroke can differ in men and women.

Aspen trains new caregivers to recognize stroke symptoms and understand the procedure in place to handle this situation. We hold a yearly in-service training on stroke and it’s symptoms because it is so important to be clear on what to do if symptoms are noticed. Caregivers are the eyes and ears of our clients and their families. They see first hand subtle changes in health or personality that family members may not be aware of.

When a client is experiencing stroke symptoms it is crucial to get medical attention as quickly as possible. If treatment can begin within 3 hours of symptoms appearing, there is a greater likelihood of recovery from the effects of a stroke.

Men and women often experience stroke symptoms differently, according to an article at Clinical Advisor.  Many seniors don’t realize they may be having a stroke until it is too late. This is where we as caregivers can help clients and family caregivers by observing and educating them about these symptoms.

If you aren’t sure, ask these questions:

  • FACE – Has the face fallen on one side? Can they smile?
  • ARMS – Can they raise both arms and keep them there?
  • SPEECH – Is their speech slurred?
  • TIME to call 911 if you see any one of these symptoms.
Recognizing stroke signs

Remember to act FAST when you see sings of stroke.

At Aspen Senior Care we provide quality training for our caregivers which leads to quality in-home care for our clients. Visit our Facebook page to see some of the exciting things we are doing and learning.

Misdiagnosed Stoke Can Lead to Vascular Dementia

Every year thousands of individuals are misdiagnosed in the emergency room with harmless headaches or dizziness when they really are experiencing signs of stroke. A study published by David Newman-Toker, M.D., Ph.D. last April found that many emergency room doctors where overlooking or discounting these symptoms, especially in people younger than 45.

The research showed that a significant number  “of people later admitted for stroke had been potentially misdiagnosed and erroneously sent home from an ER in the 30 days preceding stroke hospitalization. Those misdiagnosed disproportionately presented with dizziness or headaches and were told they had a benign condition, such as inner ear infection or migraine… About half of the unexpected returns for stroke occurred within seven days, and more than half of these occurred in the first 48 hours.”

Stroke is a leading cause of vascular dementia and it’s important for families and  caregivers to recognize the symptoms.


Receiving treatment quickly can decrease the amount of long-term effects and has been shown to decrease the chance of repeat stroke by as much as 80%.

Aspen Senior Care is dedicated to providing quality care to seniors in their homes. We have well trained caregivers and staff who love seniors and know the challenges that family caregivers face.  For more information please call 801-224-5910.