Protecting Your Heart: The importance of Cardiovascular Health
The health of your heart determines your overall health. Thus, it becomes imperative to maintain your cardiovascular health to keep going strong.
There are a number of fatal diseases that pose a major threat to your cardiovascular health. The building up of the fatty deposits called plaque in the coronary arteries, obstructs the passages and alleviates the flow of blood. The reduction or cutting down of the blood flow and oxygen supplied to the heart results in various perilous issues such as Angina, Myocardial Infarction, Arrhythmia, Congenital heart disease, Coronary artery disease, and Dilated cardiomyopathy. Different cardiovascular diseases have different causes and symptoms depending upon their type and conditions.
The risk of developing heart disease and having a heart attack or stroke depends on a range of factors. The symptoms increase with the progression of the disease. The more symptoms you have, the greater your risk. In the early stages, people suffering from coronary heart diseases are likely to experience a suffocating pain, tightness, discomfort or pressure in center of the chest which migrates to the arms, neck, back, throat, or jaw at times. The disease is mainly characterized by the following symptoms:
- Slow or racing heartbeat
- Shortness of breathing
- Loss of sensation or abnormal sensation in your arms, shoulders, or wrists
- Nausea and fatigue
- Pain arising at the center of the chest (also known as angina)
- Pain spreading to different parts of your upper body
- Palpitations (the feeling of your heart beating too fast or irregularly)
- Your arms may feel heavy
- Choking feeling in your throat
- Sweating, which may be very heavy
- Breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or light-headedness
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Keeping a check on the cholesterol level, blood pressure, triglycerides, and Body Mass Index (BMI) is imperative for ensuring your cardiovascular health. Though the factors like age, gender, race and family history cannot be controlled, making lifestyle changes or taking medication can help in alleviating the symptoms of the disease. The new types of medications, Percutaneous Coronary Interventions (angioplasty and stenting) and advanced methods of bypass surgery have brought a significant progress in the treatment.
It is recommended to undergo ECG (Electrocardiogram), Echocardiography, Exercise ECG/Treadmill Test (TMT), Exercise Thallium Test and Coronary Angiography to diagnose coronary heart disease.
Treatments following a heart attack
Various medications and treatments are effective in preventing a heart attack. They may include:
- Beta-adrenergic blocker drugs
- ACE (angiotensin-converting enzyme) inhibitors
- Defibrillator panels
- Painkillers like morphine
- Aspirin and other Antiplatelets
- Intensive therapy with a statin medicine
- Blood thinners to prevent the formation of clots
- Vasodilators like nitroglycerine to expand blood vessels
- CABG or coronary artery bypass graft
Keeping in mind the gravity of coronary heart diseases, it is recommended to keep a check on their symptoms and undergo a timely treatment for maintaining your cardiovascular health.