How to Spot a Stroke and Act Fast – A Must-Read Article

Dr Vikram Sharma

Livefit4ever, Written by Soha Khan,
Medically Reviewed by Dr. Vikram Sharma,
Febuary 10, 2024

how to spot a stroke

The main objective of this vital information is to prevent brain damage and reduce complications.

A stroke or brain attack occurs when the blood supply to the brain gets reduced or blocked due to blockage in the blood vessels that carry blood to the brain or when the blood vessel bursts.

how to spot a stroke

You must spot a stroke and act fast if you see someone experiencing a stroke. If you know how to spot a stroke and promptly act immediately, you can save one precious life.  You can also prevent complications associated with stroke.

Remember! A stroke is a medical emergency. It prevents brain tissues from getting oxygen and nutrients. when brain cells do not get oxygen and nutrients, they die within minutes.

How to spot a stroke (Symptoms of stroke)

how to spot a stroke

If you think a person is having a stroke, then do the following immediately – don’t waste your time and risk that person’s life:


Look at the face to see whether that person is finding it difficult to speak or not able to understand what others are saying. The other symptoms to look for include slur speech (words) and confusion.

See whether his or her face and jaws are drooping, or facial muscles are weak.


Ask whether the person is having numbness and paralysis in the face.

To check this, let that person smile or make a smiling expression. In a typical stroke case, the mouth may droop when the affected person tries to smile.


The person may have, double, blackened, or blurred vision in one or both eyes.

There is a sight issue – a problem seeing in one or both eyes.

Next, ask whether the person has weakness in the arms or body


Weakness in the arms

Ask the affected person to raise both hands over the head. As soon as he or she raises his arms, one or both the arms may begin to fall –a sign of stroke.


You can notice walking difficulty if someone is having a stroke. The person may stumble, and lose coordination or balance while walking.

how to spot a stroke

Weakness in one side of the body

Headache. A sudden, severe headache may be a symptom of a stroke. Vomiting, dizziness, and a change in consciousness may occur with the headache.

Trouble walking. Someone having a stroke may stumble or lose balance or coordination.

To Act Fast, Remember this “FAST”

In any emergency, you must act fast and seek medical help immediately. You cannot take any chances if it is a typical stroke case.

As you have become well aware of the telltale signs of brain stroke, you should act FAST.

And also remember!

Even if the signs of stroke come and go intermittently or disappear altogether, you must seek medical attention without wasting any time

When you see someone experiencing a stroke, the acronym FAST should immediately come to your mind.

Think fast and do the following:

Face: look for a drooping face (weakness in the face, jaws). Ask the person to smile. If it is not perfect or uneven (one side of the face drops), then it is a stroke case.

Arms: Ask the person to raise both arms. See whether one arm falls or the person cannot raise one arm.

Speech: Ask the affected person to repeat some phrase and check whether the person’s speech is unusual or slurred.

Time: If you see all of these signs or any of these signs – in either case, you must seek emergency medical help right away.


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