Some 130,000 people each year suffer a stroke, also known as stroke or stroke. The stroke is equivalent to heart attack but produced in the brain, and there are two main types of this condition: one is the hemorrhagic stroke, which occurs when a vein or artery ruptures, and the other is ischemic stroke, which occurs when there is a blockage of blood flow that hinders the access of blood to the brain.
Stroke appears suddenly and can leave very serious consequences in the person who suffers, severely affecting their quality of life. Only one third of people who suffer a stroke can recover fully and, more importantly, up to 25% of people who have suffered a stroke die within the next 30 days.
When we talk about stroke we must take into account that there are some non-modifiable factors that increase the chances of suffering one: age (from 55 years is more frequent), sex (in women death from cardiovascular disease is more frequent ), family history (genetic inheritance) and race (black and Hispanic Americans are more susceptible to stroke).
However, there are also many factors that increase the risk of stroke and that we can control, since they are related to our lifestyle. Factors such as sedentary lifestyle, obesity, high cholesterol, alcohol and drug consumption, high salt intake or smoking are also directly related to stroke.
How does stress affect the risk of suffering a stroke?
According to recent studies, such as that published in the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry, high levels of work stress, anxiety and depression are risk factors that increase the chances of suffering a stroke. Situations of psycho-physical stress or pressure at work can increase the risk of stroke by up to 58%, which makes it a very important controllable factor to be taken into account in order to prevent this pathology.
The demanding jobs that entail delivery dates and a great psychological burden, as well as those that put us before unpredictable situations, many of them in the service sector, are considered as the most stressful, and those that therefore entail a greater risk before the stroke.
In addition, this type of jobs with a high level of stress are often related to worse living habits : more disordered and unhealthy meals, sedentary lifestyle or lack of physical activity … That as we have said before are risk factors at the time of suffering a stroke.
The signs of a stroke alarm
There are five signs that warn us that a person is suffering a stroke. It is important that we know them to act as quickly as possible, calling for emergencies or transferring the person to the nearest medical center. Recognizing a stroke in time can save the life of the person who is suffering it.
- Sudden headache, without an apparent cause and of a higher intensity than usual.
- Sudden loss of strength on one side of the body that can affect the face, arm or leg.
- Loss of balance or sudden feeling of vertigo.
- Sudden alteration of the vision of one or both eyes.
- Appearance of problems to speak or to understand what they tell us.
Given the appearance of these signs, it is important that we act quickly and that we do not dismiss them : it may be a transient ischemic attack that, if treated early, can prevent cerebral infarction.