Hemorrhagic stroke happens due to high blood pressure, when the blood vessels in the brain burst. On the other hand, an ischemic stroke is caused by an interrupted supply of blood to the brain. Both types of stroke can cause paralysis, loss of speech, and in the worst-case scenario, death. But sometimes, a person can have a stroke without even knowing. This is the so-called silent stroke.

silent stroke

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Silent strokes affect way more people than previously thought, and are the cause of memory loss in 25 percent of elderly people. According the Internet Stroke Center, about 795k people a year have a stroke in the US alone, and it’s the 3rd leading cause of death. Each year, more than 140k in the US die from stroke.

People who have had a silent stroke usually continue to do their daily routines, without even knowing that something has happened to their brains. They can detect the damage only if they do a special magnetic resonance imaging, which is manifested in the form of dark spots on the brain. These dark spots are previously healthy cells, which have been destroyed by a blood clot that has travelled through the brain. The hippocampus, a red field in the second part of the brain that controls the memory, can also be affected by stroke.

Did you know that stroke can impair the vision in one or both eyes? Approximately 44 percent of people who have experienced a brain attack have said that loss of sight is a very noticeable symptom.

8 Silent Stroke Symptoms
1. Unexplained Dizziness And Unexpected Falls

Dizziness, accompanied by sudden falls, is a powerful symptom of silent stroke in women younger than 45 years of age. If you feel this, seek for medical advice.

2. Unrelated Sentences, Slurred Speech

One of the earliest signs of stroke is when a person starts to speak incoherently. Initially, there may be small misconceptions about the time of the day or the date. But, the speech may become delirious, and over time, the affected person may lose the ability to speak, which leads to confusion.

3. Sudden Weakness

A sudden feeling of weakening or limp hands or feet can be a strong sign of a silent stroke. If it continues, it can lead to paralysis or collapse. It’s best to extend your arms with the palms facing upwards for 10 seconds. If you drop one arm, then this is a sign of weakening muscles. Go and have that checked!

4. Pain And Weakness On One Side Of The Face

Pain is not a common symptom of stroke, however, if you experience sudden pain on one side of the face, then the sign is obvious. Also, if your face is semi-paralyzed, it’s an extreme indicator that you’re having a stroke.

5. Headaches And Migraines

Sharp pain in the area if the head is a common indicator of stroke, more often in women than in men. If you experience sharp headaches and migraines, you should check your brain and do a magnetic resonance tomography.

6. Exhaustion

Studies show that the affected people, and especially women, often show signs of fatigue, confusion, disorientation and exhaustion.

7. Hiccup

If you experience a sudden, but constant hiccup, it may be a sign of a silent stroke, because the stroke attacks the respiratory center in the brain. This warning sign affects women more often than men.

8. Lack Of Air

When a person has a stroke, it may experience a sudden loss of air and breathing difficulties. This indicates a cardiac arrhythmia, due to lack of oxygen. Even though this symptom is typical for women, it should not be ignored by neither women nor men.

Note: To prevent the occurrence of stroke, it’s important to lead a healthy life, exercise regularly and rest. Reduce the intake of alcohol and quit smoking. Also, try to keep your body weight at optimal level.

Stroke Statistics
Can You Have a Stroke and Not Know It?
Silent Stroke: What You Need to Know