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Diabetics Have an Increased Risk of Stroke

Diabetics Have an Increased Risk of Stroke

You may already know many of the side effects of living with diabetes. One side effect of having the disease puts you at a higher risk of having a stroke at some point in your life.


While just having the disease alone is enough to make you more vulnerable to this health event, for those who don’t control their diabetes, it’s much worse. People who don’t keep their glucose levels managed will have a higher chance of having a stroke.


When your blood sugar is consistently high, it can lead to problems with your blood vessels. What happens is that as you continually subject your vessels to the elevated glucose, it causes plaque to develop.


At the first development of plaque, you won’t notice any symptoms and you won’t have any issues. But as time passes, this plaque gets thicker. Over time, it adheres to the inside of your blood vessels and can cause narrowed passages.


This means that the way your blood normally travels through the area is now altered because it’s thinner. So your blood has to try to get through passages that don’t have enough room.


When the vessels get blocked to a certain point, the result causes a stroke to happen. A stroke shuts off the blood supply to your brain. It does this by creating a blockage such as with a clot or by causing a blood vessel to rupture.


The stroke then affects whichever part of the brain where it occurred. This is why some people, after suffering from a stroke, have trouble speaking or walking or doing other things they normally would do.


The most worrisome problem with being a diabetic with a stroke risk is that, unlike certain diseases you might get, a stroke doesn’t let you know that it’s on the way. One minute you’re feeling fine and then next, you’re in the middle of having the stroke.


The longer you go untreated after having a stroke, the more you’ll experience physical side effects from the event. There are several reasons why diabetes can increase your risk of stroke.


Your genetics play a role in whether or not your risk is elevated. Not having your blood pressure under control can also lead to a stroke. When your blood pressure is elevated, it puts more pressure on your heart.


It has to expend more energy than it would if your blood pressure was within s normal range. In fact, the leading cause of hemorrhagic stroke is having consistently high blood pressure.


Other factors can make your blood pressure worse when you have diabetes. People with high cholesterol have a tendency to have higher than normal blood pressure readings.


Having high cholesterol can make your blood pressure worse, which in turn increases your risk of having a stroke. That’s because the bad cholesterol is known to be a factor in causing plaque to constrict blood flow within the blood vessels.


This is one reason why your doctor tells you to lower your LDL. You should raise your HDL, which is your good cholesterol, because your good cholesterol can counteract the effects of the bad cholesterol within your blood vessels.


If you’re overweight, that also boosts your risk of stroke because it’s linked to other factors that can cause this to happen. Your blood pressure is affected by you being overweight.


It raises your blood pressure. The more overweight you are, the harder your blood has to pump to get throughout your body. Carrying excess weight also makes your bad cholesterol rise.


There are some risks specifically associated with being overweight that can make your stroke risk factor even greater. If you’re overweight, how you carry that weight on your body can determine your risk.


Men or women who are overweight and have big abdomens known as the “spare tire” or a “beer belly” are more likely to have a stroke. If your abdomen is what’s known as apple shape, that also raises your risk.


Having any kind of belly fat is dangerous for diabetics, especially if you’re obese. Diabetes is a disease that’s linked to strokes and certain habits increase those risks. One of these habits is smoking.


This habit causes blood clots, and constricted blood flow because it can harden your blood vessels. For someone who has diabetes, there are two kinds of stroke they’re most often at risk for.


One is hemorrhagic stroke and the other one is called a transient ischemic attack. This is sometimes referred to as a ministroke or TIA. Some people might blow off a TIA as no big deal since the effects of this type of stroke is not as damaging as a hemorrhagic one.


However, a TIA is simply a first step heralding the impending arrival of a stroke and should be treated just as seriously as a major stroke. The signs for either one are the same - having numbness in one arm or leg or feeling like the side of your face is numb or tingling.


Lightheadedness, dizziness and trouble maintaining your balance while walking can be a sign. Cognitive problems such as suddenly losing the ability to think clearly, communicate or understand when someone else is speaking are also telltale signs.


Some people who have a stroke will experience vision problems or get a debilitating headache. You can lower your risk of having a stroke by losing weight, getting your BMI below 30, controlling your glucose and blood pressure, eating healthy and exercising. Giving up smoking can also significantly lower your risk of a stroke.

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