Do you know the signs of a stroke?
EDITORIAL: The thought of suffering a stroke is one of those terrifying little numbers that boldly walks from the back of your mind to wherever it wants as you get older.
On the Fraser Coast, the number of people falling foul of the problem is inordinately high.
The thing about strokes is they sneak up quietly then announce their arrival in a hideous fashion.
A friend of mine died from one a month or two ago - never would've picked that.
I recall taking a call from another colleague some years ago in which he managed to stutter out an incomplete sentence.
He was working on the floor below me and somehow had the presence of mind to dial my number.
The fact that something was wrong was self-evident when I spoke to him, yet he sat surrounded by colleagues within a metre or two who had no idea.
It wasn't their fault - there was nothing obvious to see.
An ambulance was called and Dicky survived - he returned to work some time later.
The important thing for all of us is to be aware of the signs of a stroke.
Australia's Stroke Foundation uses the term FAST to help us remember.
Face: Check their face. Has their mouth drooped?
Arm: Can they lift both arms?
Speech: Is their speech slurred? Do they understand you?
Time: Is critical. If you see any of these signs call 000 straight away.