Learn the signs of stroke F.A.S.T. in May during American Stroke Month

Liana Rodriguez had a stroke at age 20. Read her full story below.

A stroke can happen to anyone at any point in their lifetime. May is American Stroke Month and the American Stroke Association wants you to know how to reduce your stroke risk and learn the signs everyone should know to spot a stroke F.A.S.T.

Heart disease and stroke are leading causes of death in Maine and stroke is a leading disabler. Globally, about one in four adults over the age of 25 will have a stroke in their lifetime. Even so, most adults in the U.S. don’t know the F.A.S.T warning signs of a stroke, and that stroke is highly treatable if you call 911 as soon as you recognize the symptoms.

Learn how to spot a stroke F.A.S.T.:

  • Face Drooping – Does one side of the face droop or is it numb? Ask the person to smile. Is the person’s smile uneven?
  • Arm Weakness – Is one arm weak or numb? Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?
  • Speech Difficulty – Is speech slurred? Is the person unable to speak or hard to understand? Ask the person to repeat a simple sentence, like “The sky is blue.”
  • Time to Call 911 – If someone shows any of these symptoms, even if the symptoms go away, call 911 and get to a hospital immediately.

If someone is having a stroke, they must get medical attention right away. On average, 1.9 million brain cells die every minute that a stroke goes untreated. When brain cells die during a stroke, the abilities controlled by that area of the brain are lost. These abilities may include speech, movement, and memory. The way a stroke affects you depends on where the stroke occurs in the brain and how much of the brain is damaged.

According to the Association, early treatment leads to higher survival rates and lower disability rates. Recognizing the stroke warning signs and calling 911 immediately may make the difference between a strong recovery or long-term disability, survival or even death.

Liana Rodriguez was only 20 years old when she suffered a stroke. Fortunately, her 16-year-oldbrother recognized it from seeing a video on You Tube with the F.A.S.T. signs. Read Liana’s stroke journey:

Liana’s long day – American Heart Association – Eastern States

Liana Rodriguez

To learn more about your risks for stroke go to: American Stroke Association.