5 Steps to Prevent a Mini-Stroke

May 7th 2016

Taking better care of yourself today could prevent a mini-stroke later. Know your risks and manage your overall health to prevent a mini-stroke or even a major stroke.

Lose Weight

Maintain a healthy weight in order to prevent a mini-stroke. Obesity affects other health factors that can cause a mini-stroke, such as high blood pressure, heart disease and diabetes. If you are overweight, losing even a small amount of weight can reduce your chances of having a transient ischemic attack.

Exercise Regularly

Regular exercise not only aids in weight loss, but it strengthens your heart as well, reducing the chance of a mini-stroke. Exercise can also lower blood pressure without the need for medications, further reducing the risk of a stroke.

Don't Smoke

Smoking causes both high blood pressure and heart disease, two major contributing factors to a mini-stroke. Give up smoking to improve your overall health, and reduce your risk of having a stroke.

Limit Alcohol and Sodium

Consume alcohol and sodium in moderation because both have an impact on your overall health, especially your heart health. Too much sodium can drive up your blood pressure, increasing the risk of a mini-stroke. Excessive alcohol consumption can trigger bleeding in the blood vessels around the brain and cause a mini-stroke. Limit alcohol consumption to two drinks per day.

Manage Your Other Health Conditions

Obesity, diabetes and high blood pressure are all contributing factors to a mini-stroke, so it's important that you manage these conditions well. Follow your physician's recommendations for healthy eating, getting enough activity into your day and take any medication that is prescribed to you.

Conclusion

A transient ischemic attack, often referred to as a mini-stroke, is typically a precursor to a major stroke. A mini-stroke occurs when there is an interruption to the flow of blood to the brain, usually in one of the many blood vessels leading to the brain. Mini-strokes can be preventable if you understand your risk factors and make healthy lifestyle changes.

Sources

MayoClinic.org "Diseases and conditions: Transient Ischemic Attack (TIA)" http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/transient-ischemic-attack/basics/prevention/con-20021291
NHS.uk "Transient ischaemic attack (TIA): Causes" http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Transient-ischaemic-attack/Pages/Causes.aspx

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