What is Cardiovascular Disease?
Your circulatory system, which is also called the cardiovascular system, comprises the heart, veins, arteries, and capillaries. Its primary function is to pump blood to all parts of your body. When this system gets affected, it leads to ailments, which is known as cardiovascular disease. Statistics show that these heart diseases have grown to become one of the leading causes of death across the world, compared to any other illness. Thus, it becomes increasingly important to understand it and learn how to prevent it.
In this article, we will tell you about some of the symptoms of cardiovascular disease, its type, and prevention.
Symptoms of Cardiovascular Disease
It is critical to be able to understand when someone has heart disease. The general symptoms for cardiovascular disease are:
- Pressure or pain in the chest
- Pain or discomfort in the left shoulder, arms, jaws, elbows or the back
- Fatigue and nausea
- Cold sweats
- Shortness of breath
- Dizziness or light-headedness
While these are the most common symptoms, they are not the only ones. Symptoms of cardiovascular diseases can manifest in several ways throughout the body.
The symptoms of cardiovascular disease are different for men and women. Men tend to experience chest pain, while women are more likely to experience other symptoms such as difficulty in breathing, nausea, and fatigue.
It is essential to look for symptoms of cardiovascular disease and discuss your issues with the medical practitioner. The symptoms may differ according to any specific condition. If anyone in your family is experiencing symptoms, then one must consult a doctor immediately.
Sometimes, the symptoms of cardiovascular disease are difficult to diagnose until an individual suffers from a heart attack, stroke, or angina.
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Types of Cardiovascular Disease
There are several types of heart diseases. They consist of different kinds of conditions that may or may not occur at the same time. These may also cause other diseases or conditions. More often than not, you may have come across these terms, but may not have known what they were exactly. The following list can help shed some light on the matter:-
- Angina: It is a chest pain that one experiences when there is a lack of blood flow to the heart.
- Arrhythmia: This refers to irregular heartbeat/heart rhythm.
- Cyanotic Congenital heart disease: This is the condition when there is an issue with the structure or functioning of the heart, right from birth. It is characterized by low levels of oxygen in the blood
- Coronary artery disease: When arteries are affected, it might lead to coronary artery disease.
- Heart attack: It is the condition caused when the blood flow and the oxygen supply to the heart are blocked.
- Heart failure: This is the name given to the condition where the heart is unable to contract or relax as it should do.
- Atrial fibrillation: It is an irregular rhythm of the heart, which can increase the chances of a stroke.
Causes of Cardiovascular Disease
There are numerous causes or risk factors that contribute to cardiovascular disease. Some of the common ones are:
- Hypertension or high blood pressure
- Blocks in the arteries (atherosclerosis)
- Radian therapy
- Physical inactivity
- Poor sleep hygiene
- High blood cholesterol (hyperlipidemia)
- A diet that is rich in fats and carbohydrates
- Excessive consumption of alcohol
- Sleep apnea
- Air pollution
- Reduced lung function like in Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder (COPD)
Some of these causes may be in our control to prevent, while others may not be. While prevention is better than cure, it is essential always to have a safety-net should anything go wrong. Religare Health Insurance offers Heart Mediclaim, a comprehensive mediclaim policy that covers up to 16 heart illnesses. It has numerous benefits for heart disease treatment and is a great way to protect you and your family.
Prevention of Heart Disease
Various kinds of cardiovascular diseases are preventable. Heart disease can be prevented by just making a few adjustments to our lifestyle. Prevention of cardiovascular disease is possible; but, only if strict measures are followed. It is essential to combat the risk factors by following these steps:
- Quit smoking and lowering the consumption of alcohol: Smoking is one of the critical risk factors of heart disease, and a high intake of alcohol also increases the chances of heart disease.
- A healthy diet: Reducing the intake of sugar, salt, and saturated fats, and consuming fresh vegetables and fruits is one of the best ways to prevent heart disease. Nutrition and a healthy diet play a vital role in the prevention of cardiovascular disease.
- Active Lifestyle: The Americal Heart Association recommends living an active lifestyle in which an individual must incorporate exercise.
- Managing bodyweight: Last, but not the least. Prevention of cardiovascular disease is also possible if you manage your body weight. Research has shown that by just lowering a person’s body weight by 5% to 10%, they can significantly reduce the risk of getting heart disease.
By following the steps mentioned above, the prevention of cardiovascular disease is possible.
Having a sedentary lifestyle and a poor diet may not cause heart disease when a person is young. However, they may face the risk of being affected by heart disease in the future as these conditions have cumulative effects.