High blood pressure is the number one risk factor for strokes. The following are other modifiable risk factors:
Non-modifiable risk factors include increasing age, male gender (though women have increased risk following menopause), and family history of stroke.
Certain conditions and medications make development of blood clots more likely, and therefore can increase stroke risk. Birth control pills, for example, can increase the chance of blood clots, especially in woman who smoke and who are older than 35.
Other conditions, medications, and substances can increase the risk of bleeding into the brain:
Warning signs of stroke