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Taking Control of Your Heart Health

heart health

As one of the body’s essential organs, maintaining a healthy heart is paramount to your overall well-being. Globally, heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women, with coronary artery disease (CAD) accounting for most of these deaths. Additionally, studies show that these deaths often occur without any prior symptoms, so it is common for someone at a high risk to think nothing is wrong.

However, the fact is, you can avoid future heart problems by making healthy choices today. That’s why it is so vital that we encourage you to make the smart choice for your health by leading a healthy lifestyle and getting regular screenings.

In this article, we will be exploring everything about heart health, including risk factors, causes of most heart problems, and how a Craft Body Scan can help you keep your heart healthy.

What Are Cardiovascular Diseases?

Essentially, a healthy heart is central to overall good health because the heart is responsible for circulating blood to your organs and tissues.

When certain health conditions affect the structure or function of your heart, you become at risk for cardiovascular diseases. These diseases can be detrimental to your heart and blood vessels, which then causes several heart problems that may include the following: 

Heart Attack

A heart attack happens when something blocks the blood flow to your heart and prevents it from getting the oxygen it needs. Many factors can cause blood flow issues, but most commonly, they are caused by blockages in your heart’s arteries. 

During a heart attack, the affected heart muscle begins to die, and if blood flow is not restored quickly, it may result in death. 

Stroke

Strokes also occur when something reduces or blocks blood flow to the brain and stops it from getting the oxygen and nutrients it requires. 

If blood cannot reach the part of your brain that controls a particular function, your body won’t function as it should. Thus, to limit brain damage and other complications associated with a stroke, it is important to treat it immediately. 

Heart Failure

Having heart failure does not mean your heart has failed or stopped working; it simply means your heart isn’t pumping as strongly as it should. As a result, you will become swollen and short of breath as your body holds in excess salt and water. 

Heart Valve Disease

Your heart has four valves that keep blood flowing in the correct direction. When there’s a heart valve disease, one or more of the valves in your heart don’t work correctly. 

heart health

Sometimes, one or more of the valves don’t open or close properly. This can disrupt the blood flow through your heart to your body. 

Arrhythmia

When there’s a problem with the signals coordinating your heartbeat, heart arrhythmias occur. The inconsistent signaling causes irregular beats, tachycardia (when your heart beats too fast), or bradycardia (when your heart beats too slow). 

Heart arrhythmias can be harmless, especially because they feel like a racing heart or fluttering. However, they may sometimes be problematic and even deadly. 

Coronary Artery Disorder or Disease

Coronary artery disorder happens when there’s a buildup of plaque in the arteries that supply oxygen-rich blood to your heart. Plaque consists of cholesterol, fatty substances, waste products, calcium, and the clot-making substance fibrin. 

As plaque continues to collect on your artery walls, your arteries narrow and stiffen, eventually limiting or stopping blood flow to your heart muscle. 

What Factors Are Responsible for Heart Disease?

Several factors lead to heart diseases, some of which you can control and others that you cannot.

Some of the risk factors that you cannot influence include:

  1. Genetic factors: People with a family history of high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and type 2 diabetes stand an increased risk of developing cardiovascular diseases. It is important to note that this doesn’t mean it’s inevitable; it just means it’s more likely.
  1. Age: People become more likely to develop cardiovascular disease as they age. Men’s risk increases from age 45, while women’s is from age 55. Leading a healthy lifestyle while young and old can help reduce the risk of heart and circulatory conditions.
  1. Ethnicity: Certain groups have higher risks than others. African Americans are more likely than whites to have heart disease, while Hispanic Americans are less likely to have it. While it is difficult to define the reasons for this, we recommend a healthy lifestyle to people of all backgrounds.

On the other hand, some factors you can control and change include:

  1. Type 2 diabetes: Having diabetes leads to high levels of glucose in the blood, which can damage the artery walls and make the buildup of fatty deposits more likely. If these fatty deposits occur in the coronary arteries, they can lead to possible coronary heart disease and heart attack.
  1. Smoking: Smoking damages and narrows the arteries, thereby making heart attacks more likely. Also, nicotine makes the heart beat faster and increases blood pressure, meaning the heart has to work harder to pump blood around the body. Once you quit smoking, you will notice more benefits, including improved circulation.
  1. Physical inactivity: Not exercising regularly increases a person’s chances of being overweight, having high blood pressure, and developing other conditions that make developing cardiovascular diseases more likely.
  1. Obesity: Eating an unhealthy diet and being physically inactive contributes to being overweight. Therefore, taking steps to lose weight through lifestyle and dietary changes can help reduce the risk of various cardiovascular conditions, including coronary heart disease and congestive heart failure.
  1. High Blood pressure: This is often linked to being overweight, physical inactivity, a high intake of salt or alcohol, or a family history of the disorder, but in some cases may have no apparent cause. High blood pressure will undoubtedly increase a person’s chances of a heart attack. 

How Can You Reduce Your Risks of Heart Disease?

To maintain a healthy heart, you must adopt several lifestyle changes which will help lower your risk of disease. Some lifestyle changes that can help improve your heart health include: 

Staying at a Healthy Weight

Being overweight or obese can increase your risk for heart disease. This is mainly because they are linked to other heart disease risk factors, including high blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels, high blood pressure, and diabetes. 

Therefore, controlling your weight through regular exercise and healthy eating can lower these risks. 

heart health

Eating a Healthy Diet

Try to limit saturated fats, foods high in sodium, and added sugars. Eat a variety of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy products, skinless poultry, and fish. Making this a part of your life will significantly reduce your risk. 

Getting Regular Exercise

Exercise can strengthen your heart and improve your circulation. It is also important for those trying to maintain a healthy weight and lower cholesterol and blood pressure. All these factors can reduce your risk of heart disease. 

Keeping Your Cholesterol Level Under Control

High cholesterol levels can clog your arteries and raise your risk of coronary artery disease and heart attack. Lifestyle changes and medicines can lower your cholesterol. 

Triglycerides are another type of fat in the blood. High levels of triglycerides may also raise the risk of coronary artery disease, especially in women. 

Limiting Alcohol

Drinking too much alcohol can raise your blood pressure. It also adds extra calories, which may cause weight gain. And both of those increase your risk of heart disease. Men should have no more than two alcoholic drinks per day, and women should not have more than one. 

Not Smoking

The many disadvantages of smoking are more evident; we now see pictures on cigarette packs warning smokers of the dangers. And rightly so: smoking increases your risks of diseases like heart attack and stroke by raising your blood pressure. We understand that quitting might not be easy, but you can consult your doctor to help you figure things out. 

Controlling Your Blood Pressure

High blood pressure is one of the major causes of heart disease. It is important to check your blood pressure regularly – at least once a year for most adults – and more often if you have high blood pressure. Take active steps to prevent or control high blood pressure. 

Getting Regular Health Scans

Since most heart diseases can go undetected by the patient, health scans provide imaging that helps show what is going on in the body, including abnormalities. This will help to know whether or not there is a reason to be alarmed. 

heart health

Can You Get a CT Heart Scan?

A heart scan is a fast, easy, and most accurate way to assess one’s heart health. A heart scan will help your doctors decide how minimal or severe plaque is in your heart. It aids early detection and diagnosis of heart valve disease, heart disease, coronary artery blockage, and tumors.

For persons with a high risk of cardiovascular diseases, getting a heart scan may help you feel more at ease and allow your doctor to detect abnormalities as early as possible.

Here at Craft Body Scan, our heart scan comprises a CT analysis of the heart using our computerized tomography to detect calcium deposits in the coronary arteries of your heart.

A calcium-score screening heart test will help detect calcium deposits in the coronary arteries of your heart. These scores will be between 0-3000; the higher the score, the higher your risk of a heart attack or another heart disease. The score will also help determine the urgency of seeing your PCP for further evaluation. 

Who Should Get the Scan?

If you fall under any of these categories, you have a higher heart disease risk and should consider getting a scan.

  • Middle-age adults at intermediate risk of heart disease
  • Those with a family history of heart disease
  • People with borderline high cholesterol
  • People with high blood pressure or diabetes
  • Those who are overweight.

Keeping Your Heart Healthy With Craft Body Scan

It is crucial to understand that keeping your heart healthy is something you should work on every day. Embracing a healthy lifestyle at any age can prevent heart disease and lower your risk for a heart attack or stroke.

Here at Craft Body Scan, we understand how crucial it is to detect abnormalities in the heart at an early stage. This is because early detection means early treatment and prevention or cure.  So, if you have questions or wish to schedule an appointment, our team of medical professionals is here for you.

Don’t wait until those symptoms of heart disease catch you by surprise. Get a heart screening with Craft Body Scans today.

Click the link below to book an appointment.

Click here to schedule an appointment today and take control of your health and wellness in the easiest way possible — with prevention.

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