FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — According to the American Heart Association, more than 795,000 people experience a stroke each year.

Strokes can happen to anyone regardless of age, but the likelihood of suffering from a stroke increases with age. A stroke Nurse Practitioner with Washington Regional said that strokes are the leading cause of death and disability in America.

Prevention

Lifestyle changes such as exercise and going on walks can reduce a stroke. Changing your diet to a fiber-forward diet and choosing leaner meats and low-fat dairy will also reduce your risk.

If you are a smoker, it is best to quit. Smoking increases your chance of getting a stroke. This includes vaping and e-cigarettes and nicotine use.

Women are at higher risk of suffering from a stroke, according to the American Stroke Association one in five women will have a stroke. Speaking to your health care provider and checking your blood pressure can reduce the risk.

Warning signs from the American Stroke Association:

  • Evaluate your risk factors for stroke. Some risk factors are controllable and treatable, while others aren’t. It’s important to understand your risk.
  • Know your blood pressure and keep it in a healthy range. High blood pressure is the No. 1 preventable cause of stroke.
  • Talk to your healthcare professional about ways to improve your well-being and help prevent stroke.
  • Learn how to spot a stroke F.A.S.T. If you see Face drooping, Arm weakness or Speech difficulty, it’s Time to call 911.