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Latest figures reported this week revealed that the number of stroke cases is rising at an alarming rate among the working age group of people.
The Stroke Association study revealed that there were 6,221 hospital admissions for men aged 40-45, a rise of 1,961 on 14 years earlier. Jon Barrick, the chief executive of the Stroke Association commented that “there is an alarming increase in the numbers of people having a stroke in working age. These figures show that stroke can no longer be seen as a disease of older people”
What is a stroke?
Sometimes known as a brain attack, it happens when there is poor blood supply or a sudden cut off of the blood supply to part of the brain and causing malfunction. This is due to the destruction of the brain cells as a result of starvation of essential oxygen and nutrients supplies. The condition can either be due to a blockage or a rupture of a blood vessel causing a bleed in the brain itself. The blockage is caused by the formation of blood clots in areas where the blood vessels have become narrowed or “furred” up as a result of fatty deposits. This medical condition is an emergency and is also called cardiovascular accident, which sometimes lead to long lasting disability and other medical complications.
What are the causes?
Experts believe that the biggest risk factor is raised blood pressure. Latest research also shows that lifestyle factors especially carrying excessive weight will increase the likelihood of having a stroke. Other risk factors include high cholesterol, diabetes and smoking.
How to minimise the risk
Dr Knapton from the British Heart Foundation has suggested that the latest findings highlight the need to ensure that our blood pressure and cholesterol are regularly checked and controlled as well as going for a health screen at age 40 and over.
In short, the following healthier lifestyle choices may help to reduce the risk of having a stroke:
– Have your blood pressure checked
– Exercise regularly
– Stop smoking
– Reduce alcohol intake
– Eat a healthy diet
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