“I never thought I would be the 1 out of 5 women to suffer from a stroke.” Said Christina Saldivar of Hampton, Virginia.
It was a Monday morning, at approximately 11am, when Christina Saldivar began to feel nauseas. She was in between classes, giving herself some time to prepare for her next group of students. Her head began to throb, so she made her way to the bathroom. Moments later, she’d fallen to the floor.
At 26-years-old, Christina had suffered a stroke. An elementary school music teacher, Christina found herself to be generally healthy, with a great spirit and enthusiasm for working with others. But strokes do not discriminate. Shortly after she realized she’d been unconscious, Christina called for help on her watch. The school nurse quickly appeared and dialed 911. “I didn’t know what happened to me, I don’t remember the ambulance ride at all, but I do remember the doctor coming to my bedside to tell me I suffered a stroke”.
Today, at 27-years-old, Christina is continuing her recovery stage. “I’ve shocked my doctors” she said. According to the American Heart Association, cardiovascular disease is the number 1 killer and stroke the #5 killer worldwide. Educating and informing others on the acronym F.A.S.T. has been priority for Christina, as she continues to work towards a full recovery and healthy future. “Everyone should know the symptoms. Face Drooping, Arm Weakness, Speech Difficulty and then it’s Time to Call 911. Acting fast, saved my life.” According to the American Stroke Association, a division of the American Heart Association, after their first stroke, one in four survivors will have another. Survivors can reduce their risks by working with their doctors, eating healthy, moving more, and continuing to take any prescribed medications.
Christina most recently expressed, “I want people to know that strokes can happen to anyone, young or old. I’m thankful to the American Heart and [American] Stroke Association for continuing to raise funds for lifesaving research.”