Stroke Prevention Day 2023
Our charity started Stroke Prevention Day in 2021 to encourage people to make lifestyle changes to reduce their risk of stroke. This year Stroke Prevention Day is on Thursday 12th January and we're doing something slightly different.
We’ll be encouraging people to check their pulse for atrial fibrillation (AF), which contributes to 1 in 5 strokes.
AF is when your heart beats in an irregular rhythm. When this happens, your heart isn't emptying all of the blood from inside itself with every beat. This causes blood to pool and clot. If the clots make their way into your brain, you can have a stroke. Strokes in people who have unmanaged AF are more severe and there are half a million people living with AF who don't know it. We want everyone to know how to check their pulse for AF so that we can stop stroke before it happens.
If you’ve had a stroke, you should have been tested for AF at some point. You can find out more about managing your risk of stroke with AF here.
Because atrial fibrillation is such a big cause of stroke, and often has no obvious symptoms, it’s really important that you spread the message and encourage your family and friends to test for atrial fibrillation too. You can check your pulse in your wrist or neck to see if it has a regular rhythm easily. Here’s a video to show you how.
If you think you have undiagnosed AF, or you check for AF in someone else and you think they might have it, you should contact your GP surgery and let them know. They’ll advise you on next steps.
This Stroke Prevention Day we need you to help us to raise awareness by encouraging your family and friends to check themselves. Please visit stroke.org.uk/spd23 on Thursday 12 January and share our new films about how to check your pulse for AF.