February: Heart Health Awareness Month
A heart attack is a potentially life threatening emergency. Know the signs/symptoms of a heart attack as well as lifestyle changes you can do NOW to lower your risk of heart disease.
Signs and symptoms:
unusual pressure/pain sensation in your chest
pain in one or both arms, jawline, shoulders, neck area
shortness of breath
nausea and vomiting
diaphoresis ( excessive sweating)
if these signs and symptoms occur, it is important to get to the closest emergency department to receive treatment that lowers the risk of permanent heart injury and long term complications. Time is of the essence, and rapid treatment ensures the best outcomes.
Lifestyle changes to lower ones risk of heart disease include the following:
maintain appropriate weight for age and height.
increase intake of fresh fruits and vegetables
decrease intake of processed food
get adequate sleep (7-8 hours nightly)
stay up to date with your annual preventive screenings ( immunizations, blood pressure checks, cholesterol studies)
get active! 30 minutes of activity at least 5x a week is a good start. Find activities you enjoy and invite family and friends to participate as well.
For more information on good heart health, check out the American Heart Association (www.heart.org) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (www.cdc.gov)(