Every 7 minutes, someone in Canada dies from heart disease or stroke (Statistics Canada, 2011). If a co-worker was experiencing symptoms of a stroke or heart attack at a job site, would you be able to recognize the signs and take action?
In this post, you will learn what to look for when someone in the work place is experiencing a stroke or a heart attack.
What is a Heart Attack?
A heart attack happens when sections of the heart muscle is blocked from receiving blood often by way of a clogged artery. Blood restriction causes portion of the heart muscle dies.
Warning Signs of a Heart Attack
Recognising the warning signs of a heart attack could save someone’s life. Be aware of the following symptoms among your co-workers.
- Chest discomfort (uncomfortable chest pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain, burning or heaviness)Confusion or trouble understanding other people
- Discomfort in other areas of the upper body (neck, jaw, shoulder, arms, back)
- Shortness of breath
What should I do if someone is having a Heart Attack?
If someone is experiencing symptoms of a heart attack, be sure to take the appropriate steps to mitigate the effects of blood loss to the brain.
- Call 9-1-1 (or have someone call for you)
- Stop all activity, have the person sit or lay down
- If the sufferer takes nitroglycerin regularly, take your normal dosage
- With the advice of a 9-1-1 operator, chew and swallow two 80mg tables of ASA – Aspirin (do not take acetaminophen or ibuprofen instead)
What is a Stroke?
A stroke is a blood clot preventing your brain from getting the blood it requires. The important thing is what you do if stroke symptoms happen; the sooner the treatment, the less chance of serious damage to the brain and less chance of permanent disability.
Warning Signs of a Stroke
Recognising the warning signs of a stroke could prevent serious damage. Be aware of the following signs among your co-workers.
- Numbness or weakness in your face, arm, or leg, especially on one side
- Confusion or trouble understanding other people
- Trouble speaking
- Difficulty seeing with one or both eyes
- Trouble walking or staying balanced or coordinated
- Severe headache that comes on for no known reason
What should I do if someone is having a stroke?
If someone is experiencing symptoms of a stroke, be sure to take the appropriate steps to mitigate the effects of blood loss to the brain.
- Don’t ignore stroke warning signs – even if you have just one warning sign or if symptoms are mild or go away.
- Don’t wait! Every minute counts.
- Call 911 or emergency medical services (EMS) if you have one or more symptoms for more than a few minutes. An ambulance can get you to a hospital without delay.
- Check the time when symptoms begin. This is important information to share when you arrive at the hospital.
Even if you’re not 100% sure if someone is experiencing a stroke, be sure to take action as soon as possible. It’s better to have a wasted trip to the hospital rather than risk permanent damage. Having some basic knowledge to recognize the symptoms of a stroke or heart attack could save your own or a co-workers life and prevent any long term damage. Not ignoring the signs and making a quick response is your best bet to insure a positive outcome to an emergency situation.