Heart disease is the number one killer of Americans, yet many people are not fully informed on its risks and symptoms. “Many people seem to think that heart disease only afflicts those who are overweight or men over a certain age,” says Dr. Liliana Cohen, cardiologist at Summit Medical Group. “Although age and weight can be factors, making such generalizations when it comes to the heart is dangerous and a perfect example of a ‘what you don’t know, can kill you’ scenario.”
Below, Dr. Cohen clears up some of the confusion surrounding heart disease with some quick “Did You Know” facts.
❤ Did you know that more than 60,000 Americans die of heart disease each year?
❤ Did you know that ANYONE, even children, can develop heart disease?
❤ Did you know high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, smoking and inactivity all increase your risk for heart disease?
❤ Did you know you can protect your heart against heart disease by being active, getting quality sleep, eating healthfully, managing stress, and not smoking?
❤ Did you know that back pain, arm pain, shoulder pain, and abdominal pain can all be signs of heart disease?
❤ Did you know that heart disease is more common in women, but women are less likely to notice or report symptoms?
❤ Did you know that many health experts agree that psychological factors can contribute to heart risk?
If you are concerned about your heart health or display any of the symptoms mentioned above, it may be time to have a heart-to-heart with your doctor. A primary care physician can determine if you have risk factors, begin you on treatment, recommend lifestyle changes, or he or she may refer you to a cardiologist for further examination, support, and treatment.
You can also learn more from Dr. Cohen during her Living a Heart Healthy Life lecture at West Orange Public Library on February 24th.