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  Marjorie Comer   February 15, 2017   Heart 0 Comments

Take good care of your heart

Improve your health with heart screenings in Shreveport, Louisiana

Make sure your heart loves you.We recognize February as the month of love, which is why it’s a great time to celebrate your heart and evaluate your heart health.

The term heart disease refers to several conditions that impact the health of your heart. Most heart conditions occur when plaque builds up in your arteries, reducing blood flow and increasing your risk for a heart attack, heart failure or stroke.

According to the CDC, heart disease is a leading cause of death for both men and women, which is why it’s imperative to know how to better care for your heart.

Screenings

Regular screenings help in detecting if you have a heart problem. Typically performed during your annual doctor’s visit, these tests have a normal and high range associated with them. Doctors use these figures to determine if you have a heart issue. You should know these five results of heart health screenings:

  • Blood pressure. Most doctors consider 140/90 to be high.
  • Blood sugar. Most doctors consider 126 mg/dL to be high.
  • Body mass index (BMI). Most doctors consider 30 to be high.
  • HDL (good) cholesterol. Doctors consider less than 40 mg concerning.
  • Total cholesterol. Doctors consider above 200 mg concerning.

Some people may experience anxiety when visiting the doctor and will therefore temporarily have high blood pressure during the visit.

Other screenings include an EKG or a cardiac CT and even invasive procedures.

Treatment
If you do experience a heart-related issue like a heart attack, heart failure or stroke or you suffer from a higher than normal rating, there are treatment options available.

  1. Lifestyle change.
    According to the American Heart Association, changes to your lifestyle can reduce your risk by 80 percent. Quit smoking to immediately improve your heart health and reduce risk of heart disease. Exercise more frequently and ensure adequate sleep each night to decrease your risk as well.
  1. Cardiac rehabilitation.
    This is a medical program where you receive supervision to improve your lifestyle following a coronary artery bypass surgery, heart attack, heart failure or heart-valve surgery. The goal of cardiac rehab is to prevent you from returning to the hospital again after having a heart-related incident.
  1. Medication.
    While medication may keep things under control, some medications have adverse effects leading to other issues. Medication is often a Band-Aid on a health issue, while a lifestyle modification is often a game changer.
  1. Surgical procedures.
    If your heart isn’t doing well, a surgical procedure may be your best option. A coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) is the most common procedure. It’s used to treat individuals with severe coronary heart disease. The CABG improves blood flow to the heart by connecting a healthy vein or artery to the blocked artery.

While the American Heart Association recognizes February as American Heart Month, your heart is something you should think about every day. Undergo annual heart health screenings to take good care of your heart and consider changing your lifestyle to avoid being stuck with a daily medication, cardiac rehab or a surgical procedure in the future. Visit your Velocity Care Urgent Treatment Center in Shreveport, Louisiana, or Little Rock, Arkansas, to undergo a heart health screening today.

Medicine that should be in your medicine cabinet

Photo credit: 123RF Stock Photo

Medical disclaimer

This site offers medical, health, fitness and nutritional information and is designed for educational purposes only. General information found on this website is not intended to diagnose any medical condition or to replace your health care professional.  If reading after hours, one option for treatment is to seek an urgent care or  walk-in clinic for medical advice. 

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