February is the month when heart health is the focus. It’s easy to remember, with all the Valentine’s Day decorations around, and vybe urgent care makes it easy to come in and start a preliminary screening for heart health. If you think you are experiencing a life-threatening emergency, please call 911, but if you’re on a journey to discover how healthy your heart is, we can help.
There are some risk factors that you can’t do anything about when it comes to heart disease. Heredity is a big issue, so it is important to know your family’s health history. Risk increases as you get older, and men are more likely to have heart disease than women.
There are some risk factors that can be controlled. Those who are overweight or smoke are more likely to suffer from heart disease. Cholesterol issues, including a high LDL, or a low HDL are also an issue, along with high blood pressure. Those who struggle to keep diabetes or stress under control are more susceptible to cardiac problems, as are those who are physically inactive.
Sometimes, health problems sneak up on you little by little, and you don’t even realize there is an issue. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, don’t panic, but it might be time to get things checked out. Any kind of discomfort in the chest, including pain, squeezing, heaviness, pressure, or aching should be investigated. Sometimes that discomfort can spread to the arms, shoulders, neck, and back. Shortness of breath, heart palpitations, dizziness, nausea, and sweating are also warning signs of a possible heart problem. Swelling in the lower extremities is also associated with some heart disorders.
Thankfully, there’s almost always something you can do to improve your heart’s health. When making lifestyle changes, it’s always a good idea to take small steps and acclimate yourself to the new normal. Always check with a medical professional before starting a new diet or exercise plan too.
Move more. The easiest way to accomplish this goal is with a pedometer. Whether you buy a basic model or a fancy device that syncs with your phone, you can keep track of how many steps you take, and know when you’re sitting around too much. The goal for most people is 10,000 steps each day, but start to figure out how many steps you take and then try to increase it by a 1,000.
If you have any concerns about your heart health, or it’s just been a while since you have had it checked out, stop by one of our urgent care locations. We are open on weekends and evenings and don’t require an appointment. We can listen to your ticker, check your blood pressure, and even do some cholesterol tests right in our office so you can know where you stand.FIND YOUR VYBE