Each year, more than 795,000 Americans have a stroke. More than 130,000 die as a result, and many more suffer significant disability. A stroke, or "brain attack," occurs when blood circulation to the brain fails. Brain cells die from decreased blood flow and the resulting lack of oxygen. There are two broad categories of stroke: those caused by a blockage of blood flow and those caused by bleeding. The most frequent cause, responsible for about 80 percent of strokes, is blockage of a blood vessel in the brain or neck.
Knowing the warning signs and controlling the risk factors will lower the risk of death and disability from stroke. Warning signs are clues the body sends that the brain is not receiving enough oxygen. The presence of one or more of these signs is a message to call 911!
- Sudden weakness or numbness of the face, arm, or leg on one side of the body.
- Sudden dimness or loss of vision, particularly in one eye.
- Sudden difficulty speaking or trouble understanding speech.
- Sudden severe headache with no known cause.
- Unexplained dizziness, unsteadiness, or sudden falls, especially with any of the other signs.
Other danger signs that may occur include double vision, drowsiness, and nausea or vomiting. Sometimes the warning signs may last only a few moments and then disappear. These brief episodes, known as transient ischemic attacks or TIAs, are sometimes called "mini-strokes."
Controlling the risk factors of stroke will decrease the likelihood of a stroke occurring. Some of the most important treatable risk factors are:
- High blood pressure (hypertension)
- Cigarette smoking
- Heart disease
Standard medical treatment for stroke, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), usually involves emergency medical care to address the acute condition, hospitalization for drug therapy and possible surgery, and rehabilitation to improve physical ability and reduce dependence.
STROKE IN THE CAYCE READINGS
Stroke was called "apoplexy" during the era in which Edgar Cayce gave readings. In the eighty readings indexed as stroke, "systemic toxicity" was one of the common causes mentioned. Specifically, hypertension (high blood pressure) was often linked to problems with constipation or poor eliminations. The readings also warn that endocrine (gland) failure to provide the substances needed to maintain the walls of the circulatory system may result in a stroke.
The therapeutic approach advocated in the Cayce readings is based on the concept of innate healing: the body has the natural ability to heal itself, even when the illness involves serious neurological pathology. Although a full physical recovery is not promised in every case, most of the readings contain indications of a positive outcome if the suggested therapies are applied consistently and persistently.
These basic therapies were encouraged to assist with the healing process and help to prevent future strokes:
The Wet Cell Battery
To help stroke victims recover, the readings advised using a wet cell battery, a simple chemical battery which is connected to the body via wires and plates and produces a very low direct current. The appliance was recommended to help the body heal the nervous system damage. Typically, a massage was to follow immediately after each 30-minute wet cell session. Interestingly, successful new medical treatments like Functional Electrical Stimulation (FES) utilize the same theory of electrical stimulation as the wet cell battery. (Wet cells are available from the official Cayce Care supplier, Baar Products at Baar.com.)
Changing the diet to improve nutrition and prevent constipation was typically advised. The most important aspects of the recommended diet include: a variety of fresh vegetables and fruits, whole grains, limited meat, no fried foods, and no junk food (high sugar, starch, and fat-laden snacks). The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) today recommends a diet very similar to the recommendations of the basic Cayce diet.
The Cayce material and modern health science both recommend drinking plenty of water each day to keep the digestive tract moving freely. The readings also advise monthly colonic irrigation to assist eliminations through the colon.
Spinal Adjustments and Massage
The readings often recommended spinal adjustments to correct problems with the nervous system. It is difficult to obtain the osteopathic adjustments specified by the Cayce material, but a chiropractor may be of some help. Massages after each wet cell session are encouraged.
Moderate daily exercise is encouraged to prevent stroke and assist in healing after a stroke. Walking is a good place to start for many people. The Cayce head and neck exercise may be helpful for persons experiencing sensory system impairment. Try to be outdoors in the open when practical. It is important for anyone with health issues to check with a physician before beginning any new physical activity.
Ideals and Attitudes
Working with attitudes and emotions is an important aspect of healing. Maintaining a positive attitude and applying the spiritual, mental and physical (lifestyle) recommendations found in the Cayce material will assist in stroke prevention and recovery. The Cayce readings encourage a strong spiritual emphasis in dealing with stroke recovery:
But grow first in grace, in knowledge and then apply the mechanical sources for the healing and correcting of the body.
--Edgar Cayce reading 3684-1