In the event of a stroke, time is of the essence. Caregivers need to be able to recognize the signs of strokes so they can get their senior loved ones the help they need immediately. Common stroke symptoms can be remembered via the acronym FAST, which stands for Face drooping, Arm weakness, Speech difficulties, and Time to call emergency services. Here’s a closer look at some of the most common signs of strokes in aging adults.
When a senior is having a stroke, the first symptom is often facial drooping. One side of the face may appear uneven, or your elderly parent may experience feelings of numbness. If you notice any irregularities, ask your loved one to smile. In the event one side is markedly lopsided, it may be cause for concern.
If your senior loved one has been diagnosed with a serious condition and needs help with tasks like meal prep, transportation, bathing, and grooming, reach out to Lifestar Home Care, a leading provider of in-home care families can trust. We also offer comprehensive care for seniors with dementia, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s.
Strokes usually affect one arm more than the other. If you notice one of your loved one’s arms seems limp or nonfunctional, ask him or her to raise them both as high as possible. If one arm drifts downward, it may be a sign of a stroke.
If your loved one is having a stroke, his or her speech may become slurred, fragmented, or difficult to understand. To check for a speech impediment, ask your loved one to repeat a basic sentence like “The weather is warm today” or “The grass is green.” If your loved one cannot repeat the sentence, slurs words, or is unable to speak at all, it’s time to get help.
Strokes are just one of the many medical conditions older adults are susceptible to. There are a variety of age-related health conditions that can make it more challenging for seniors to live independently. However, many of the challenges they face can be easier to manage if their families opt for professional home care service. Oklahoma City, OK, families can rely on expertly trained caregivers to keep their loved ones safe and comfortable while aging in place.
Time to Call Emergency Services
Never hesitate to call emergency services if you suspect your loved one is having a stroke. It’s always better to be safe than sorry. If your loved one is demonstrating any of the symptoms discussed above, call 911 and get medical attention for your parent as soon as possible.
Symptoms of a Mini-Stroke
It’s also important to be on the lookout for the symptoms of mini-strokes. Also known as transient ischemic attacks (TIAs), mini-strokes don’t necessarily cause lasting damage, but they could indicate the onset of a major stroke attack. If mini-strokes last for more than 24 hours, they often transition into regular strokes and cause lasting damage. The symptoms of TIAs are similar to those associated with strokes, but they’re usually less obvious, which means seniors can undergo multiple TIAs before anyone notices.
Mini-strokes can cause balance issues, dizziness, and poor coordination. If your loved one suddenly has bumps and bruises he or she can’t account for, they may be caused by TIA-related disorientation. Seniors who have experienced TIAs may also have speech difficulties, though not to the same extent as someone who’s had a full-blown stroke. Listen for sentences that are mostly correct but littered with the occasional slurred word or strange grammatical construction.
Recovering from a stroke, managing the symptoms of Alzheimer’s, and a variety of other health-related situations can make it difficult for a senior to continue living at home without someone there to help. Oklahoma City live-in care professionals are trained to help seniors who need 24/7 assistance. With the help of a live-in caregiver, your elderly loved one can maintain a higher quality of life while aging in place. Trust Lifestar Home Care to provide high-quality compassionate professional care for your loved one. Call us at (405) 288-9275 today to talk to one of our compassionate Care Managers about our high-quality home care services.