Every year, over 780,000 men and women die from heart disease – this makes heart disease the leading cause of death in the U.S.
But did you know that heart disease can be prevented in many cases?
During this American Heart Month, we’re going to hear more from one of our own physicians, Dr. Brad Barton, on heart disease prevention and how to recognize signs of heart disease.
How do I know if I have heart, or cardiovascular, disease?
The best way to determine if you have heart disease is to visit your physician and discuss any of your concerns, but you can also evaluate your personal risk.
If you have any of the following risk factors, you have increased chances of heart disease.
- Over the age of 40
- High blood pressure
- High Cholesterol
- Current smoker
- Family history
You may also experience symptoms, but many individuals with heart disease won’t until a serious attack or episode, says Dr. Barton.
Some of these symptoms include:
- Chest pain, discomfort or a feeling of anxiety and rapid heart beat
- Chronic nausea, indigestion, or heart burn
- Unusually loud snoring
- Constant fatigue or easily exhausted
- Swollen legs, feet or ankles
These symptoms can also be attributed to many other, non-life threatening conditions, but it’s important to be aware of potential signs.
I feel fine, so I probably don’t have heart disease, right?
Oftentimes, patients experience no or few symptoms with heart disease until an attack or other cardiovascular episode. It’s important to be educated about your personal risk and make regular appointments with your physician to ensure your heart health.
What sort of exercises and dietary changes can I make to help prevent heart disease?
Dr. Barton recommends doing anything that gets you moving, eating less saturated fats and avoiding sugary, overly-processed foods. Just make sure any physical activity is approved by your physician beforehand, especially if you’re engaging in intense exercise.
The Heart Foundation recommends engaging in aerobic exercise on a regular basis, either thirty minutes, five days a week at a moderate level, or twenty minutes, three days a week at a vigorous level.
What conditions does heart disease cause?
Besides heart attack, heart disease leads to many other serious, even life-threatening conditions.
Some of the include:
- Coronary artery disease
- High blood pressure
- Congestive heart failure
- Peripheral artery disease
Making even small changes to your everyday routine can significantly lower your chances of heart disease. To learn more about heart disease, visit this page.
What changes are you making to protect your heart health? Let us know!
Nutex Health, Inc supports you and your family’s health. You can depend on Golden Triangle Emergency Center or any one of our concierge-level, freestanding emergency facilities to deliver the emergency care you deserve, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.