What happens to a person’s body when there is a stroke? Are there things that can be done to help prevent this?

A stroke happens when a blood clot blocks an artery or when a blood vessel breaks, and blood flow to the brain is interrupted, according to the National Stroke AssociationOff Site Icon (NSA). When either of these things happen brain cells die, and the brain is damaged.

The brain damage causes a loss of abilities – including movement, speech and memory – controlled by certain areas of the brain, according to the NSA. The severity and location of the stroke can determine how much brain damage is caused by each stroke.

While everyone has some risk of stroke, some risk factors can be managed. The NSA recommends the following factors to help prevent a stroke:

  • Check for circulation problems
  • Control your diabetes
  • Cut down on sodium and fat in your diet
  • Drink alcohol in moderation or not at all
  • Find out if you have atrial fibrillation
  • Include exercise in your daily life
  • Keep blood pressure in control
  • Quit smoking
  • Work to lower your cholesterol

Risk factors such as age and family history are beyond your control, so following these guidelines is the best option for prevention a stroke, according to the NSA.

For more information about what happens during a stroke and stroke prevention, talk with your physician.

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