Top 20 Warning Signs of Heart Disease

The Top 20 Warning Signs of Heart Disease  we should all know. In addition, heart disease is the leading cause of death in men and women in the United States. Furthermore, it is estimated that it accounts for one in four deaths and that it affects hundreds of thousands of people each year. Cardiovascular disease refers to a number of problems where blood vessels are narrowed or blocked, leading to a heart attack, chest pain, or stroke .

Heart disease also refers to other problems, such as those that directly affect the heart muscle, rhythm, and valves. While there are a wide range of serious problems that fall under Heart Disease , there are risk factors and symptoms that you should be aware of.
heart disease and risk factors.

Coronary heart disease (also referred to as coronary artery disease) results when cholesterol-laden plaque builds up in your arteries and blocks blood flow. What happens is that the buildup of plaque makes the walls of your blood vessels sticky, so over time the inflammatory cells, lipoproteins and calcium circulating in your bloodstream start to adhere to the walls.

As we age it can cause a blockage that restricts the blood and oxygen your heart needs to keep pumping. This blockage causes a multitude of problems that we will explain later. But what causes heart disease ? Well, about half (49%) of Americans have at least one of these risk factors:

And there are other medical and lifestyle conditions that put people at high risk, such as:

  • Obesity :
  • Diabetes:
  • poor diet:
  • Not being physically active:
  • Excessive use of alcohol :

As for Symptoms, Each Problem Linked to Heart Disease Has Its Own Signs, But There Are Some Common Symptoms Like:

  • Heart palpitations or irregular heartbeats:
  • Weakness and/or dizziness:
  • shortness of breath :
  • Chest discomfort:

Since there is a wide range of problems that are caused by Heart Disease , we are going to focus on 3 of the most prominent ones: heart attack, atrial fibrillation, and heart failure .

Heart Attack:  As we mentioned above, the heart muscle needs oxygen to survive. The American Heart Association explains that when the blood that carries oxygen to the heart muscle is blocked or totally impaired by plaque, it can cause a heart muscle to die . This causes a heart attack.

Symptoms of a heart attack include: 

  • Discomfort in the chest or in the center of the chest. This discomfort may last for more than a few minutes, or it may disappear and come back. This can provide uncomfortable pressure, tightness, fullness, or pain:
  • Upper body pain/discomfort. Symptoms of a heart attack can also include pain in one or both of your arms, neck, jaw, back, or even your stomach:
    shortness of breath :
  • Sweat, nausea, dizziness:

Atrial Fibrillation:  Atrial fibrillation is the most common type of irregular heartbeat. Electrical impulses cause the heart muscles to contract to pump blood. Atrial fibrillation is caused when these electrical impulses do not travel to the heart muscles in an orderly manner. When electrical impulses do not go straight to the heart muscle, they cause a very fast and disorganized heartbeat. Atrial fibrillation affects more than 2 million people a year, increases with age, and is associated with a wide range of problems:

  • high pressure :
  • Coronary artery disease (blockages in the arteries of the heart):
  • Heart valve disease:
  • Previous heart surgery:
  • Chronic lung disease:
  • heart failure :
  • Cardiomyopathy (disease of the heart muscle that causes heart failure ):
  • Congenital heart disease ( heart disease present at birth):
  • Pulmonary embolism (blood clot in the lungs):

Signs and symptoms to be aware of for these problems include:

  • Heart Palpitations :
  • Fatigue or lack of energy:
  • Dizziness:
  • Chest discomfort:
  • shortness of breath :

Heart Failure:  Heart failure may sound like the scariest condition of all these problems, but the American Heart Association explains that heart failure just means the heart isn’t pumping as it should because it’s weak. Your heart pumps to send oxygen and nutrient-rich blood to your body’s cells, and when those cells aren’t nourished, your body can’t function properly.

So when it comes to heart failure , the weakened heart doesn’t send the oxygen and blood your body needs, which results in fatigue, shortness of breath , swollen ankles, and sometimes coughing. Simple tasks like climbing stairs can become very difficult for someone suffering from heart failure .
Heart failure is more likely to happen as we age, but it is a chronic problem that anyone can develop due to a multitude of other problems:

  • Coronary (artery) disease:
  • Past heart attacks:
  • High pressure:
  • Abnormal heart valves :
  • Heart muscle disease :
  • Birth defects:
  • Severe lung disease:
  • Diabetes:
  • Obesity :
  • Sleep apnea:

Less commonly, these other problems can also cause heart failure:

  • Low red blood cell count:
  • Overactive thyroid gland:
  • Abnormal heart rhythm:

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