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How to prevent a stroke

It’s scary to think about: Strokes can strike without warning and can lead to disability or even death.

A stroke is caused by a clot or rupture of a blood vessel that prevents blood flow to the brain. It can cause lifelong disabilities and is the fifth-leading cause of death in the United States.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that close to 800,000 Americans each year suffer a stroke. It’s not just older adults who are at risk either — many younger adults are, too. Experts say that up to 10 percent of strokes occur in patients younger than 45 years old.

However, many strokes are preventable, according to Dr. Michel Torbey, medical director of the Stroke and Neurovascular Center at Ohio State’s Wexner Medical Center.

As part of American Stroke Month in June, experts are spreading the word about how to prevent strokes.

Torbey offered 10 ways you can decrease your stroke risk by as much as 80 percent: