Women face an increased risk of heart disease once they cross 65 years of age. However, some women can get it earlier owing to their heredity or lifestyle. While it is believed that heart disease is more common in men, it is also a major cause of concern in women these days.
What is heart disease?
Heart disease is a common terminology used for many diseases that relate to the heart. The following are the most common ones:
- Atherosclerosis disease (caused by clogging of arteries)
- Congestive heart failure (problems related to the pumping of blood)
- Arrhythmia (related to the heart’s rhythm)
- Valvular heart disease (problems with heart muscles and valves)
Some of these diseases may develop over time. Others could be due to deformed heart in birth or heredity. These are the major heart diseases found in women. They are also known as cardiovascular diseases.
Symptoms of heart disease in women
Most of the times the symptoms for heart diseases do not appear until it is too late. However, sometimes early symptoms can be noticed. The key here is to be aware of the possible symptoms so that you do not be careless about them when you experience it.
The following are the symptoms that a woman needs to be in the lookout for:
- Chest pain or other similar symptoms like chest discomfort or pressure. Sometimes one can also experience chest tightness. Any of this could be indicative of atherosclerosis or arrhythmia.
- Shortness of breath is a very common symptom of all heart diseases. If you experience unnecessary shortness of breath, then it could be indicative of a heart condition.
- Numbness, coldness or weakness in your limbs can also be an indication for atherosclerosis.
- Unusual racing of heart, slow heartbeat or fluttering of the heart could be suggestive of arrhythmia.
- Fainting, light-headedness or dizziness are also common symptoms of heart diseases.
- Weakness or fatigue could mean that your heart is not functioning properly.
- Swelling in legs, feet or even abdomen could be a sign of heart disease.
Different symptoms given in the list could be indicative of different heart diseases. So, when you notice these symptoms, it is advisable to go get yourself diagnosed. Once we cross 30 years, it is better to get regular health check-ups.
Risk factors in women
Certain factors increase the risk of heart diseases in women. They either increase the chance of women getting heart diseases or can speed up the complications.
- Sedentary lifestyle
- Depression or stress
- Heart disease running in the family
- High cholesterol or high blood pressure
- Pregnancy complications
All of this could increase your chances of getting heart diseases. It will serve you well to take action for those risk factors that are in your control. As women age, it is necessary to make some lifestyle changes to maintain your health. Eat healthily and incorporate exercise into your daily routine. Avoid drinking too much as your body does not have the same capacity to recuperate as it could when you were young.
Be mindful and take care of your health.