We all know that heart disease is number one reason of death in America.Most of us know the signs of heard attack, but many do not know there are other, earlier and surprising signs of heart disease. Researchers have done a lot of work in recent years looking at the signs and symptoms patients experienced in the months or even years leading up to a heart attack.
The heart with the arteries together is a big muscle and when it starts to fail the symptoms can show up in many parts of the body.Here are 7 surprising sights of hard disease that everybody should know, and If you are repeatedly experiencing any of the symptoms below, you should consult a doctor to check it out.
1. Sexual Problems
Most people don’t know is that erectile dysfunction is actually one of the best early tip-offs to progressive heart disease. Researchers at the Mayo clinic followed men ages 40-49 with erectile dysfunction and found they were twice as likely to develop heart disease as those with no sexual health problems.
Another study looked backward and found that two out of three men being treated for cardiovascular disease had suffered from erectile dysfunction, often for years, before they were diagnosed with heart trouble. Narrowing of the arteries restricts blood flow to the penis in men and can limit sexual arousal in women, while lack of oxygen in the blood can lead to prolonged fatigue and weakness that can impede libido.In women, reduced blood flow to the genital area can impede arousal, make it harder to reach orgasm.
2.Snoring, Sleep Apnea, and Other Breathing Problems During Sleep
Those with sleep apnea were found to have three times the normal risk of having a heart attack within five years. Sleep-disordered breathing, which includes sleep apnea and a lesser condition known as UARS, lowers the blood oxygen that feeds the heart. Obstructive sleep apnea is thought to damage the right side of the heart, which has to pump harder to support the lungs, which are strained by trying to overcome the airway obstruction.
3. Sore and Swollen Gums
Sore, swollen, or bleeding gums are symptoms not only of periodontal disease — in which exposure to bacteria causes the gums to become inflamed and pull away from the teeth — but also a possible early sign of underlying cardiovascular disease.A study by the American Academy of Periodontology (AAP) estimated that the prevalence of periodontal disease may be underestimated by as much as 50 percent.
Experts believe that poor circulation due to heart disease could be an underlying cause of periodontal disease. Researchers are also studying whether a common bacteria is involved in both gum disease and plaque buildup inside coronary arteries. The link may also have something to do with the body’s response to prolonged inflammation.
4.Irregular Heartbeat or Arrhythmia
An early sign that something in the cardiovascular system is out of whack is irregular heartbeat, or arrhythmia. It may feel like your heart is skipping beats, beating too fast, or pounding too hard.Coronary artery disease (CAD) is the leading cause of sudden death for both men and women because it can lead to both heart attack and stroke.
The most common cause of irregular heartbeat is CAD, which restricts blood flow to the heart, straining the electrical system that keeps the heartbeat regular and coordinates it with other functions. Heart failure can also cause arrhythmias because the weakened heart overcompensates by beating harder and faster.
5.Puffy or Swollen Legs or Feet
If you notice a strange tightness when you take off shoes and socks, you might be have a problem with fluid retention, or edema.Fluid retention can be a sign of coronary artery disease (CAD), heart failure, and other forms of cardiovascular disease.More than 80 million people have one or more forms of cardiovascular disease, and approximately 900,000 people die from it each year.
Fluid retention occurs when the heart doesn’t pump strongly enough and blood doesn’t carry waste products away from tissues. Edema usually starts in the feet, ankles, fingers, hands, and legs because they’re furthest from the heart, where circulation is poorer.
6.Constriction or Aching in the Chest or Shoulder
A common symptom of coronary artery disease (CAD) is angina, which is a type of chest pain that feels like a deep ache or weight on the chest. One of the reasons angina is often missed is that it feels different to different people; to some it’s more of a heaviness, fullness, or pressure rather than pain. It can also be mistaken for indigestion or heartburn when the pain occurs lower down in the abdominal area. The tightness, constriction, or pain may also occur in the shoulder, neck, jaw, arm, or upper back, where it may be mistaken for a pulled muscle.
According to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, 17 million people are living with angina.Cases of angina are divided almost equally between men and women, with men being slightly more at risk.
When plaque builds up in the coronary arteries, it deprives the heart muscle of blood, making it feel squeezed. Most people with stable angina find that episodes are most often triggered by anything that puts an additional strain on the heart, such as exercise or stress.
7.Shortness of Breath
AN early sign that something is wrong with a major bodily system is shortness of breath, typically with exercise, exertion, and stress.It may feel like you can’t catch your breath, or you may notice a feeling of compression in the chest and lungs, making it difficult to take a deep breath. Another breathing symptom of poor circulation may be labored breathing, which occurs when fluid accumulates in the lungs. If you notice that your breathing problems are worse at night or anytime you lie down, that can also indicate a heart problem.A study carried out by the National Institute of Health (and published in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Institute) found that 40% of women who had had heart attacks reported a strange shortness of breathe.
When your heart isn’t pumping strongly enough, less oxygen circulates in your blood. The result is shortness of breath; you might feel like you do at high altitude or when you’ve run for the bus, unable to draw enough oxygen into your lungs.