Nowadays, stroke during sleep is not just a health issue affecting the elderly; the incidence among young individuals is also increasing. If this condition is not detected and promptly intervened, it can lead to severe complications and even result in the loss of a patient’s life. Join us as we delve deeper into this condition in the article below.
What is a stroke? Signs of stroke during sleep
A stroke, or cerebrovascular accident, is a condition that commonly occurs when the blood supply to the brain shows signs of blockage, reduction, or interruption. As a result, the brain is deprived of adequate blood flow and oxygen, leading to cellular damage within minutes. It is a prevalent neurological disorder that can occur at any age.
Individuals who experience a stroke require immediate medical attention and timely treatment to prevent dangerous complications and even death. Detecting a stroke is already challenging, and identifying a stroke during sleep is even more difficult. It is impossible to accurately determine when the onset of the disease occurs.
However, when the following signs manifest in the body, it is important to pay attention as they could be warning signs of a stroke during sleep:
Headache and dizziness
Not everyone experiencing symptoms of headache and dizziness during sleep will have a stroke. However, these signs indicate reduced blood flow to the brain, causing individuals to feel lightheaded, especially when abruptly changing positions. Particularly at night, the activity of body parts is diminished.
In some cases, individuals may face severe headaches leading to cerebral blood vessel blockage and overall health impairment. These are all warning signs of the risk of a stroke during sleep.
Frequent sleep disturbances and insomnia
Feeling tired, stressed, experiencing nausea, and persistent headaches make it difficult to achieve deep sleep. Consequently, the quality of sleep is compromised, directly impacting overall health. These symptoms are likely indicating the possibility of an impending stroke.
Drooling during sleep
One commonly overlooked warning sign of a stroke is drooling during sleep. Especially if this occurs on one side, it requires special attention. It indicates that the cerebral cortex is affected due to reduced blood flow, lack of oxygen, or hardened arteries. Consequently, the functioning of the parts under the tongue is persistently disrupted.
Numbness in the arms and legs can be a sign of a stroke during sleep
Numbness in the arms and legs can be a sign of a stroke during sleep. When the body becomes stiff while sleeping, it indicates that there may be underlying health issues, and in more serious cases, it could be a stroke occurring during sleep. The arms and legs are distant from the heart, which means that the blood circulation to these areas may be affected, leading to problems. Therefore, if you frequently experience numbness in the arms and legs every morning, it is important to check your health to prevent any negative impact on your well-being.
In addition, there are other symptoms that indicate a stroke and should not be taken lightly, such as blurred vision, difficulty pronouncing words, abnormal speech, difficulty with movements, and partial paralysis in the arms and legs.
Causes of increased risk of stroke during sleep
Before exploring ways to prevent stroke during sleep, it is important to identify the factors that can lead to this dangerous condition. By doing so, you can proactively prevent and minimize the risk of experiencing a stroke.
The incidence of sleep-related strokes resulting from late-night bathing has been increasing significantly in recent years, especially among young individuals. Bathing late at night causes sudden changes in body temperature, leading to the constriction of blood vessels and affecting blood circulation to the brain. Consequently, the risk of experiencing a stroke during sleep is heightened.
Read more: Stroke During Nighttime Bathing
Late-night eating habits
Although it may seem counterintuitive, late-night eating is actually one of the causes of nighttime strokes. Consuming food at night, particularly high-fat and high-calorie meals, as well as carbonated drinks, is detrimental to overall health. This habit contributes to elevated levels of blood lipids, fatty liver, and weight gain, which can lead to atherosclerosis and increase the risk of stroke during sleep.
Consuming alcohol before sleep
Drinking alcohol before bedtime is also a factor that increases the risk of experiencing stroke symptoms. Alcohol stimulates the nervous system, causing a sudden rise in blood pressure and potential damage to blood vessels, which can result in blood clots and subsequent strokes.
Prolonged fatigue and stress
One’s mood and mental state directly impact overall health. Persistent fatigue and prolonged stress can overstimulate the nervous system, leading to the increased likelihood of constricted blood vessels in the brain and a higher risk of stroke during sleep.
Preventing Sleep-Related Strokes
Detecting and addressing sleep-related strokes can be challenging. However, there are preventive measures that individuals can adopt by cultivating healthier habits.
Establishing a proper sleep routine
According to a study conducted in the United States, individuals who sleep less than 5 hours per day have an 83% higher risk of experiencing a stroke compared to those who get a full 8 hours of sleep. Experts recommend aiming for 6-8 hours of quality sleep every night. Sound sleep is a natural and safe remedy for preventing sleep-related strokes.
Engaging in regular exercise
A strong and healthy body is more resilient against chronic conditions and helps prevent strokes. Allocating at least 30 minutes each day to physical activities or engaging in sports enhances blood circulation and improves overall fitness.
Adopting a scientific diet
Boosting nutrient intake through a well-balanced diet enhances immune function and reduces the risk of underlying conditions associated with strokes. Build a solid defense for your body by consuming regular, nutritious meals rich in vegetables, fresh fruits, an adequate amount of water, and essential vitamins. Additionally, limit the consumption of fast food, processed meals, and stimulant-containing beverages.
Frequent feelings of stress, anger, sadness, or fatigue can trigger the release of adrenaline, disrupting heart rhythm and causing elevated blood pressure. Consequently, the risk of experiencing sleep-related strokes at night increases. Therefore, learning to manage emotions positively is crucial.
Regular health check-ups
Undergoing biannual health check-ups is essential for everyone. These check-ups not only help detect early signs of stroke risk factors but also provide individuals with a comprehensive understanding of their overall health status. If any unusual symptoms manifest, seeking medical attention and early diagnosis are crucial.
Sleep-related strokes are challenging to detect and control. Therefore, if you experience any of the above-mentioned symptoms, it is important to visit the nearest healthcare facility for thorough medical examination and appropriate treatment guidance.
John Alen was born in 1971 and is a doctor in the healthcare and psychology fields with many years of experience. He is currently working at easyhealthylive.com, a leading health and psychology blog. Having studied at Y1 National Medical University named after IM Sechenov, John Alen is using his knowledge and experience to help improve the physical and mental health of people in the United States.