Heart Disease Prevention for Women

February is Heart Health Month, and in the United States, heart disease is the leading cause of death for women.  “Heart disease” is a blanket term for several types of heart conditions, the most common being coronary artery disease, or CAD. CAD decreases blood flow to the heart, and can result in a heart attack. 

Heart disease can often go unnoticed until a person experiences symptoms of a heart attack. For this reason, it is important to take preventative steps and to know the risk factors before a heart attack or heart failure occurs.

Several factors can increase your risk of developing heart disease, including:

  • Diabetes
  • Unhealthy diet
  • Obesity
  • High cholesterol
  • High blood pressure
  • Sedentary lifestyle
  • Family history
  • Tobacco use
  • Excessive alcohol use

Although not all of these factors can be avoided if you are genetically predisposed, taking preventative measures can lower your risk of developing heart disease.

You can lower your risk of heart disease by keeping active, eating healthy, being a non-smoker, and limiting your alcohol consumption. 

A woman suffers a heart attack roughly every 90 seconds in the United States. Common heart attack symptoms include:

  • A feeling of uncomfortable pressure on the chest
  • Severe shortness of breath
  • Sharp pain in the neck, jaw, back, or one or both of the arms
  • Unexplained fatigue
  • Dizziness or lightheadedness
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Cold sweats

If you or someone you know is experiencing these symptoms, immediately call 9-1-1. Treatment works best if administered within an hour of your symptoms beginning. 

If you have any questions about your risk of heart disease, ask your primary care provider. Premier Health Associates is open 7 days a week.