Use the BE-FAST acronym to remember stroke warning signs. If you notice or experience any of these symptoms, call 911 immediately. 

Signs & Symptoms

B  - Balance difficulty: Sudden loss of balance or coordination, weakness or dizziness

E  - Eye changes: Sudden onset of vision changes in one or both eyes

F  - Face drooping: Sudden onset of facial drooping, usually on one side

A  - Arm weakness: Sudden weakness or numbness in the arm, leg or face, usually on one side of the body

S  - Slurred speech: Sudden onset of trouble speaking or difficulty in understanding speech

T  - Terrible headache: Sudden onset of severe headache with no known cause


If you experience any of the signs or symptoms of a stroke, don't take chances. Call 911.

Risk Factors

Risk factors such as age, genetics, gender and race cannot be controlled. However, there are several risk factors that you can control. If your health care provider has already identified that you have any of these risk factors, it is very important to create a plan to help reduce your risk of stroke.

  • Smoking

  • High blood pressure (hypertension)

  • Alcohol consumption and illegal drug use

  • Stress

  • Diabetes

  • Obesity

  • Transient ischemic attack (TIA)

  • Inactivity

  • Unhealthy diet

  • Abnormal cholesterol

  • Atrial fibrillation

  • Carotid artery disease

  • Peripheral vascular disease