- by Manipal Hospitals
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- Jul 21 2017
9 Common Myths About Heart Disease
The heart is a four-chambered organ which pumps deoxygenated blood to the lungs for oxygenation and then pumps the oxygen-rich blood back to the whole body. Any problems in the structure of the heart can affect its functioning. Most heart conditions affect the cardiac muscles, the blood vessels, the electrical conduction system, and the valves of the heart.
The signs and symptoms of heart disease vary with the underlying causes. There are many myths surrounding heart disease which may affect the diagnosis, treatment, and management of the condition.
Myth 1: Chest pain or discomfort in the chest is the only symptom of a heart attack.
Fact: Chest pain is a major symptom of a heart attack, but it is not the only symptom. Also, all chest pains do not indicate a heart attack. In addition to chest pain, pain or discomfort in your neck, back, jaw, and light-headed or short breath can indicate an impending heart attack. Chest pain could also be a symptom of acidity and is usually relieved with antacids.
Myth 2: Nothing can be done to improve my heart’s health, as I have a family history of heart disease.
Fact: Everyone believes that family history can increase the risk of heart disease, and nothing can be done to cure it. But, the fact is that you can do many things to reduce your risk, in spite of having a family history. Exercising moderately, eating a healthy diet, and maintaining a healthy weight can help your heart to be healthier even though you are at risk.
Myth 3: My heart beat stops when my heart fails.
Fact: Many believe that the heart stops in the case of heart failure. The fact is that the heart beat stops only when there is a cardiac arrest. When you are diagnosed with heart failure, it means that your heart is not functioning the way it is supposed to and is having trouble pumping the blood. When your blood is not transported through your body effectively due to heart disease, then you may feel shortness of breath, swelling in your ankle or feet, and difficulty sleeping.
Myth 4: My heart is beating fast and I may get a heart attack.
Fact: When there is an increase in the heart rate, it does not mean that you may get a heart attack. Your heart beats increases with moderate exercise or even after walking briskly for few minutes.
Myth 5: Pain in my legs has nothing to do with my heart.
Fact: People believe that pain in legs could be due to stress, but the fact is that it can be due to the formation of plaque in your arteries which is one of the symptoms of heart disease. People with this condition are at the risk of peripheral artery disease and are at a higher risk of heart attack or stroke.
Myth 6: Taking diabetic medication can help to protect my heart.
Fact: It is a misconception to think that taking diabetic medication can prevent heart diseases. The fact is that diabetes and heart disease have coinciding risk factors. So, even if your blood glucose level is under control, you are at the risk of getting a heart attack.
Myth 7: I need not worry about my heart, as I am young.
Fact: Heart diseases do not occur only in old age. Plaque formation can start at a young age, especially in people who have diabetes and a smoking habit. So, it’s better to maintain a good diet and exercise habits from young age onwards to reduce the risk of heart disease.
Myth 8: I should not exercise after recovering from a heart attack.
Fact: People may stop doing any kind of exercises after recovering from a heart stroke. The fact is that being active strengthens your heart. Exercise increases your life span after a heart attack. So, after a heart attack, you should follow the instructions on exercises given by your doctor.
Myth 9: Heart disease is a man’s problem.
Fact: Heart disease is a killer disease even in women. Women before menopause may have a little lower risk of heart disease; however, after menopause, the risk is same as in men.
Heart disease is a serious issue and requires proper medical attention. Do not let incorrect beliefs and confidence in your age prevent you from taking care of your cardiac health.
If you have been experiencing any symptoms related to heart disease for a prolonged period of time, feel free to consult our expert cardiologist. Click here to book an appointment now: http://bit.ly/1Ra0JFM
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