Symptoms that lead up to a stroke include sudden confusion, loss of balance, problems with vision and a severe headache, according to Everyday Health. Other warning signs are unexplained dizziness, sudden falls, sudden visual dimness, brief loss of consciousness and sudden weakness or numbness on one side of the body, states WebMD.
The side of the body on which weakness or numbness occurs is the side opposite to where a stroke may be occurring in the brain, as reported by Health.com. To test for muscle weakness in the arm, extend both arms palms up outward for 10 seconds. One arm drifting downward is an indication of muscle weakness. Lifting each leg separately is a test for leg weakness.
A headache occurring as part of a stroke can feel like the worst headache one has ever had, according to Health.com. Research has found that people who experienced a headache as a stroke symptom were often younger, more likely to be women than men, and had a history of migraines.
Confusion occurring as part of a stroke may feel more like agitation or delirium, according to Everyday Health. A sudden loss of vision may occur that affects either one or both eyes and ranges from blurred vision to total vision loss. Balance problems result from dizziness or loss of coordination.