What Are Stroke Signs While Sleeping?

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To achieve the best recovery from stroke – the treatment should be given within a few hours after the onset symptoms appear. This is the major issue when this brain attack occurs while sufferer is sleeping. For this case, family or others around sufferer cannot realize that something wrong was going on and the emergency treatment cannot be performed immediately.

About 1 in 7 cases of stroke may occur during sleep

As well we know, stroke is a condition when the blood flow to the brain through an artery or more than one artery is blocked.

The discontinue supply of blood means that there are some cells of the brain that don’t get the continuously supply of oxygen & nutrients – this can make the cells of the brain begin to die. And depending on which area of the brain is affected, stroke can cause some neurological symptoms.

The occurrences of stroke while sleeping affects about 14 percent of all cases, according to a study conducted by the University of Cincinnati published in the Journal Neurology!

Patients who wake up with this brain attack usually cannot get the treatment immediately, since the early onset symptoms have occurred for many hours during sleep. In this case, we are talking about sleep at night that can take many hours.

image_illustration64For this reason, many times doctors cannot determine when the symptoms appeared. And on the other hand, the treatment must be given within a few hours to save more cells of brain that begin to die, as noted before.

However, imaging studies are continuously going to find the best treatment for patients with a stroke attack during sleep. Patients who got the attack immediately prior to awakening can have a better prognosis in recovery than others who got it many hours before awakening.

What are the signs when it occurs during sleep?

Actually, there is no significant difference for the early noticeable symptoms of stroke that occurs when you are sleeping or not.

But as noted before, during sleep, you may be less aware that you are experiencing this brain attack – either for other people around you. In general, the symptoms can be noticeable more clearly after awakening

See also the common early signs of stroke in here.

Nevertheless, some signs may also appear when patient is sleeping – these can vary, depending on which area of the brain is affected. These may include:

Facial numbness

The numbness on one side of the face can occur during sleep, but since you are sleeping, you usually don’t realize it but other people around you can see it (drooping on one side of the face).

Which side of the face is affected is dependent on which part of your brain is affected. If your left-brain is affected, the dropping face usually occurs on the right-side of your face. And conversely if the stoke affect your right-brain!

Difficulty in swallowing

When you have difficulty swallowing, you may be the only one that knows it. But sometime it also can cause gasping /gagging for breath that may be able to be noticed by other people around you.

Less responsive

It also can be a sign, though it can be a vague symptom. When you sleep, you can lose the awareness of around you (particularly during the stage of deep sleep) and it’s perfectly normal.


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