February Is American Heart Month

President Lyndon Johnson proclaimed the very first American Heart Month in February 1964 and it has been proclaimed every year since then. Even though we have made great strides in the diagnosis and treatment of heart disease, it remains the leading cause of death in the United States. Every year, one in four deaths are caused by heart disease. Here are some quick tips to remind you of your heart disease risk, symptoms of a heart attack, and what you can do to prevent heart disease.

What are the Risk Factors for Heart Disease?

  • High Blood Pressure
  • High Cholesterol
  • Diabetes
  • Smoking
  • Family History of Heart Disease

What are the Symptoms of a Heart Attack?

  • Discomfort, pressure, or heaviness in the chest
  • Discomfort radiating to the back, jaw, throat, or arm
  • Sweating, nausea, vomiting, or dizziness
  • Rapid or irregular heartbeat

What are the best steps to Prevent Heart Disease?

  • Regular checkups with your doctor
  • Stop smoking
  • Exercise about 30 minutes most days of the week
  • Eat a heart healthy diet
  • Get enough quality sleep

Of course, if you have any symptoms that resemble a heart attack, call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room immediately. As I discussed previously, kick off the new year right, and make a visit to your family doctor and get your regular checkups and health screenings!