Heart problems are no longer limited to the elderly and are becoming more common in women of all age groups. Due to multiple responsibilities at work and home, young women often find themselves unable to manage stress, which is a major risk factor for heart disease. Poor diet, lack of exercise and obesity are other causes of heart disease in women. However, even those who look fit and well should worry about heart disease if they have a family history of heart disease, wrong lifestyle habits like smoking and drinking, among other factors. (Also Read: Heart Attack Warning Signs That Women May Confuse With Menopause Symptoms)
There are many myths about women’s heart health that they believe and which can put them at increased risk of heart disease. It is believed that women should worry more about breast cancer than heart attacks, this myth needs to be dispelled. It is also believed that a woman’s increased heart rate can be linked to an impending heart attack which again is far from the truth.
Consultant Cardiac Surgeon Dr. Sir HN Reliance Foundation Hospital and Research Center in Mumbai. Bipinchandra Bhamre talks about myths related to the heart that women should stop believing.
“Nowadays, the incidence of heart attack, stroke, heart attack, and coronary artery disease (CAD) is increasing in the country at an alarming rate when it comes to women. Not only old but also young women are being diagnosed with heart disease. Certain factors like stress, high blood pressure and High blood sugar levels, poor diet, and lack of physical activity can increase the risk of heart disease in women and men. However, many women suffer in silence and most cases go unreported. There is a need to create awareness and remove misconceptions about heart problems,’ says Dr Bhamre. .
Myth: Heart disease is only seen in men
Actually: Women should only worry about breast cancer, not heart disease. But, this is wrong. Heart disease causes higher mortality and morbidity rates in women. Women with early menopause and rheumatoid arthritis have a higher chance of developing heart disease. Furthermore, women diagnosed with preeclampsia (high blood pressure during pregnancy) should take precautions to avoid heart problems.
Myth: A heart attack means the heart has stopped beating
Actually: There is often confusion about heart attack and cardiac arrest. Cardiac arrest occurs when the heart stops pumping blood. Heart failure is the failure of the heart to function as it should. Hence, a person may experience symptoms such as shortness of breath, swelling of the legs or feet, and inability to sleep. So, remember that heart attack and cardiac arrest are two different things.
Myth: A woman may have a heart attack if her heart is beating too fast
Actually: Heart rate also increases after moderate to vigorous exercise and caffeine consumption. This is not a cause for concern as long as it is frequent and does not affect your heart. So, you should consult a cardiologist and seek timely intervention.
Myth: There is no connection between leg pain and heart problems
Actually: Pain in the leg muscles can indicate plaque build-up in the arteries and heart disease. Therefore, people with peripheral artery disease have a higher risk of heart attack or stroke. Do not ignore leg pain and try to find out the reason behind it with the help of a doctor.
Myth: Diabetes does not affect the heart by taking medications prescribed by a doctor
Actually: Even if one’s blood sugar is under control, anyone with diabetes is at risk of heart attack. Quit smoking, maintain a healthy weight, exercise and eat well to keep your heart healthy.
Myth: Heart problems only occur in older women
Actually:Stress, poor diet, lack of exercise and obesity can also lead to heart problems in young people. Hence, heart problems are not limited to the elderly and are commonly seen in young women.
Myth: Heart disease does not affect fit and healthy women
Actually: Even if you are fit, certain factors like poor eating habits, smoking, high blood pressure, high blood pressure, and cholesterol levels, family history of heart problems can lead to heart disease. Therefore, regular heart checkups should be done as per the doctor’s advice.
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