Posts for tag: Heart Attack
The leading cause of death in the United States, heart disease is not a condition to be taken likely. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to reduce your risk of a heart attack. Lifestyle adjustments and habits can have a powerful impact on the health of your heart, and at Virgin Islands Orthopaedics and Medical Specialists in St. Thomas and St. Croix we are dedicated to helping you lead a heart-smart lifestyle. Here are some ways you can reduce your risk and achieve your best health:
Smoking, and even exposure to second-hand smoke, increases your risk of suffering a heart attack, as well as slowing the recovery process. Ask your provider about programs and aids to help you quit smoking if you are struggling to give up nicotine.
Physical activity is an important component of heart health. Any activity that raises your heart rate counts, from vigorous exercise like running to more low impact activities like biking. Even performing chores and playing at the park can help strengthen your heart.
Eat a nutritious diet
While it's okay to have treats on occasion, make sure the majority of your caloric intake comes from unprocessed, vitamin, and mineral-rich foods. Fruits, vegetables, lean meats and dairy, whole grains, and healthy fats like nuts and olive oil are great choices. Remember to include plenty of fiber in your diet, and limit saturated and trans fats. If you're having a problem creating a healthy meal plan, talk to your St. Thomas and St. Croix providers.
Watch your cholesterol
"Bad" cholesterol, or LDL, should be kept at a low level to reduce the risk of a heart attack, while "good" cholesterol, or HDL, should be a higher number. Diet and fitness may be enough to get your cholesterol on track, or your provider may prescribe medication.
Maintain a healthy weight
Obesity, or being underweight, can put a strain on your heart. Because body mass index measurements don't take into account factors like muscle percentage, age, and fitness level, ask your provider to help identify your ideal weight range, and adjust your diet and fitness as necessary to achieve that weight.
Keep your stress low
A high-stress lifestyle can do a number on your heart, so it is important to find a balance between work, leisure, and sleep. Try mediation, breathing exercises, or talking to a friend if you find your stress levels are peaking.
Reach out to the experts at Virgin Islands Orthopaedics and Medical Specialists today for more tips on reducing your risk of a heart attack. Call our St. Thomas office at 340-714-2845 or reach our St. Croix location at 340-692-5000.
We usually hear more about men's susceptibility or risk of heart attacks but what women go through is underreported. Truth is, "about 1 in 16 women age 20 and older have coronary heart disease," according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. You should call 911 and rush to the hospital if someone has a heart attack, and notify your Virgin Island Orthopaedics and Medical Specialists in St. Thomas and St. Croix.
What is a heart attack?
A heart attack is when arteries supplying the heart with oxygenated blood narrow because of plaque buildup. Very little oxygen or none at all reaches the heart, causing a heart attack. Here's an animation of a heart attack to give you a better idea of what happened.
Heart Disease and Heart Attacks: Men vs. Women
Heart disease in men is usually due to coronary artery blockages, obstructive coronary artery disease. Women develop heart disease in the smaller arteries.
Symptoms of a Heart Attack
Women’s most common heart attack symptom is chest pain, just like men, but women are more likely to suffer from other symptoms, like shortness of breath, nausea, vomiting, and back or jaw pain. It's important to know the difference so you can seek proper treatment from your providers in St. Croix and St. Thomas.
Other symptoms include:
- Pressure in the chest that lasts more than a few minutes
- Shooting pain in one or both arms, back, neck, jaw or stomach
- Breaking out in a cold sweat
"Heart disease is the leading cause of death for women in the United States," according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Women often underplay symptoms and assume they have the flu or acid reflux.
Angina in Women
Angina is a precursor to a heart attack. You may feel tightness, pressure, or discomfort in your chest while exercising or stressed. If you suffer from angina, you need to speak with your doctor in St. Thomas or St. Croix. Symptoms in women include:
- Feeling out of breath
- Abdominal pain
- Sharp chest pain
Need a consultation?
If you need to speak with a doctor, contact Virgin Island Orthopaedics and Medical Specialists in St. Thomas and St. Croix at either location: (340) 714-2845 for St. Thomas or (340) 692-5000 for St. Croix.
How do you know you are at risk for a heart attack?
Cardiologist Dr. Ahmet Sayan of DBA Virgin Islands Orthopaedics and Medical Specialists, can identify subtle signs that may indicate heart issues and recommends treatment options at his St. Thomas and St. Croix office.
When should you visit your cardiologist in St. Thomas and St. Croix and when are you at risk for a heart attack?
- If you're experiencing chest pain or discomfort, then you may want to speak with your doctor. Chest pain mimics heartburn, noticeable during exercise and severe chest pain may result in nausea, vomiting, pain that extends to your arms, jaw, neck, or shoulders. Call 911 immediately if you have these symptoms.
- Feeling fatigued, especially during the workweek or due to a recent illness, may make you feel more tired. Visit your cardiologist if you feel very tired, weak, or dizzy for no obvious reason.
- If you have a family history of heart disease, your cardiologist needs to evaluate your heart disease risk.
- Contact your cardiologist if you suffer from certain chronic health conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure, kidney disease, and high cholesterol.
- Smokers have an increased risk of developing cancer and heart disease.
- If you start noticing shortness of breath or palpitations, this can be a sign of several heart conditions.
More About Chronic Diseases:
High Blood Pressure: As mentioned above, if you suffer from long-term high blood pressure, contact your cardiologist for specific prescription medication to lower your blood pressure.
Heart Palpitations: This leads to shortness of breath, dizziness, or anxiety, especially if the heart palpitations occur regularly.
High Cholesterol: This condition leads to arteriel plaque buildup which increases the risk of heart attack. Medicine, regular exercise and a healthy diet can keep cholesterol under control.
If it’s time to schedule a cardiologist, then call DBA Virgin Islands Orthopaedics and Medical Specialists in St. Thomas and St. Croix today!