Think FAST To Save A Life.

Stroke is a leading cause of death worldwide. For stroke survivors, the long-term effects can be devastating for both them and their family. Disturbingly, over the past few years, the rate of stroke among young adults and children has grown rapidly. One of the biggest concerns is that most people having a stroke don’t recognize the symptoms and miss out on medical treatment when it can be most effective.

It’s important to identify the warning signs of stroke and act fast. The sooner you receive medical care, the higher your chances of recovery are. Stroke can rob a person of both their physical abilities and their personality. The faster you take action, the more of the person you save.

Signs and Symptoms

The signs of a stroke vary from person to person and they usually occur without warning. Common symptoms include the inability to write or understand spoken language, numbness/weakness in the face, arms and legs, double vision, headaches, vertigo, and an inability to recognize faces.

To help recognize a stroke quickly the acronymFAST is used as an easy reminder of the most common stroke symptoms. The letters stand for;

Face: Check their face – has their mouth drooped?

Arms: Can they lift both arms?

Speech: Is their speech slurred, do they understand you?

Time: Is critical. If you see any of these signs call 000 straight away.

Why Is It So Important To Recognize A Stroke?

Recognizing if someone is having a stroke and receiving emergency medical treatment are important for three main reasons.

  1. Only a doctor can decide if you are having a stroke.
  2. Some treatments must be given within three hours of the stroke starting.
  3. They will need to be assessed by a doctor who will look at treatments to prevent another stroke.

Because every person and every stroke is different it’s important to seek treatment, even if you’re not sure. For more information visit the stroke foundation’s website.

Focus on…

Shin Splints

What Are Shin Splints?

Also known as Medial Tibial Stress Syndrome (MTSS), this common injury usually affects runners, dancers and people who engage in sports that involve jumping and running. While shin splints can seem harmless, if left untreated they can really impact your ability to keep up training and even interfere with your daily routine. The good news is that you can prevent and treat shin splints quite easily.

Shin splints are a common overuse injury that causes pain along the inside of the tibia (shin bone). As with most overuse injuries it is caused by an inability of the structures around this region to cope with the demands of training. The pain can be coming from injury to the muscles surrounding the tibia, the structures that attach these muscles to the tibia or the tibia itself.

Signs and Symptoms

Shin splints often start as a dull pain around the inside of the shin, usually around the middle third of the lower leg.

You may feel pain before, during, or after activity. The affected area may be sore and tender, with some swelling and often both legs are affected. Pain often begins gradually and in the beginning it may come and go, however as the condition progresses pain can be present all the time.

How Does It Happen?

The exact cause of shin splints is often difficult to pinpoint, however as with many overuse injuries, dysfunction at another site can cause tissue to take on more stress and begin to breakdown. Below are some common factors that may increase your risk of developing shin splints.

  • Training errors, increasing intensity too quickly.
  • Pronating feet or uneven leg length.
  • Running uphill or on hard surfaces.
  • Unsupportive footwear.
  • Gluteal weakness and pelvic instability.
  • Reduced muscle strength and flexibility

How Can Treatment Help?

Many other conditions can mimic shin splints so it is important to visit your therapist who can diagnose your condition correctly and advise suitable reductions to your training program. Furthermore, left untreated, shin splints have been known to develop into stress fractures or compartment syndrome.

While rest and ice will help to settle symptoms quickly, your therapist will be able to identify the factors most likely to be contributing to your pain and assist with correction of any muscle imbalances, joint stiffness or training errors. For further treatment options and advice on managing your shin splints, don’t hesitate to ask your therapist. We can help you!!

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