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Senior Strokes: The Signs to Look for and the Next Steps to Take

Fast action is vital if you suspect a senior loved one is having a stroke. Knowing the signs and responding appropriately can minimize the damage from a stroke and increase the chances of a smooth recovery. Redondo Beach, CA, post-stroke care experts discuss the signs you need to look for and the steps to take if your loved one has a stroke.

Look for These 5 Major Warning Signs

1. Weakness or numbness, especially on only one side of the body, may occur in the legs, arms, or face.

2. Confusion, difficulty speaking, and an inability to understand others are common signs. Speech may be slurred, and your loved one may not realize he or she is speaking oddly.

3. Your loved one may experience loss of vision or blurred vision in both eyes or on one side only.

4. Strokes often cause seniors to lose their balance and coordination, leading to difficulties with walking or standing. These symptoms may also be accompanied by dizziness.

5. An intense headache that develops suddenly may indicate a stroke.

Utilize the FAST Test

The National Stroke Foundation recommends using the FAST test, a quick and simple mnemonic that can help you remember the signs you need to watch for and the next steps to take.

  • F stands for Face – Check if one side of your loved one’s face droops when asked to smile.
  • A stands for Arms – Have your loved one raise both arms and see if one arm cannot be raised.
  • S stands for Speech – Ask your loved one to recite a sentence after you. Listen for accuracy and slurring.
  • T stands for Time – Call 911 immediately if you have the slightest suspicion your loved one has had a stroke. Treatment must occur within 3 hours to give the best chance of a successful recovery. 

What You Shouldn’t Do If You Suspect a Stroke Has Occurred

  • Do not wait to see if the signs will go away. Even if they do, your loved one still needs immediate medical care.
  • Do not take your loved one to the hospital yourself. Call an ambulance so the paramedics can begin treatment immediately.

Following a stroke, seniors need specialized in-home care. The dedicated caregivers at Home Care Assistance can provide the support your loved one needs during recovery and beyond. Our caregivers can assist with mobility, provide transportation to medical appointments, and help with a wide array of everyday tasks. For more information on the elder care Redondo Beach families rely on, call one of our experienced Care Managers at (310) 504-0506 to schedule a free in-home consultation.