It Won’t Happen to Me
I had a stroke at 30. I never thought it could happen to me!
One year later, my father died from a stroke. I couldn’t believe it; I couldn’t admit it had happened to him!
We all think (or thought) that it won’t happen to us or to people we love because we believe that each of us is more likely to experience good things and less likely to experience bad ones. Actually, we disregard the reality, and this is called the optimism bias.
I hope that after ten days you’ll say, “It won’t happen to me,” not because of the optimism bias but because you’ll already know that…
• YES, stroke can happen to anyone at any age at any time, BUT suffering a stroke is largely under your control.
• YES, every two seconds someone has a stroke worldwide and every six seconds someone experiences death or disability due to stroke, BUT nine of ten strokes could be prevented by simple lifestyle changes.
• YES, stroke is one of the leading causes of death or disability worldwide, BUT you’ll live longer and better because you know which measures you can take to significantly reduce your risk.
• YES, you can’t change some risk factors, BUT knowing that they are not primary may encourage you to work harder on the ones you can keep under control.
So, what is a stroke?
You probably already know that it’s when the supply of blood and oxygen to the brain is blocked (ischemic stroke) or an artery in the brain bursts (hemorrhagic stroke). Within a very short period of time, the nerve cells in that area of the brain become damaged and die. As a result, the part of the body controlled by the damaged area of the brain cannot function properly, affecting a person’s ability to move, speak, see, or remember. So, stroke is a medical emergency that, if it does not kill, can result in a long-term disability that seriously impairs quality of life.
You might also know that it’s when one experiences extremely scary emotions or when one doesn’t know what’s happening but feels that something is very wrong. It’s a flash that changes our lives forever and leaves us with physical and psychological challenges to overcome … but also with a novel type of life appreciation:
♪♪ And I think to myself what a wonderful world,
Yes, I think to myself what a wonderful world ♪♪
You might also saw that stroke leaves us with sad eyes…
But, you know, for me, the saddest thing is that I COULD have prevented it!
Tomorrow, we’ll discuss two of the leading modifiable risk factors of stroke and why snoring may indicate your increased risks as well.
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