What is heart disease?
Cardiovascular(CVD) disease actually includes heart, stroke and blood vessel disease. CVD affects one in six Australians or 3.72 million and kills one Australian every 12 minutes (30% of all deaths; deaths that are largely preventable).
What are the risk factors for CVD?
- Risk factors include:
- high blood pressure;
- high cholesterol;
- overweight and obesity;
- physical inactivity;
- low fruit and vegetable intake; and
- alcohol and smoking.
Nine in 10 adult Australians have at least one risk factor for CVD and one in four (25%) have three or more risk factors. People from lower socioeconomic groups, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and people living in remote areas have the highest rate of hospitalisation and death resulting from CVD in Australia.
What are the warning signs?
The most common warning signs of a heart attack are outlined below. You may have just one of these symptoms or you may have a combination of them. Symptoms can come on suddenly or develop over minutes and get progressively worse. Symptoms usually last for at least 10 minutes.
Discomfort or pain in the centre of your chest
This can often feel like a heaviness, tightness or pressure. People who have had a heart attack have commonly described it as like“An elephant sitting on my chest”, A belt that’s been tightened around my chest” or “Bad indigestion”. The discomfort may spread to different parts of your upper body.
Discomfort in these parts of your upper body
You may have a choking feeling in your throat. Your arms may feel heavy or useless.
You may also experience other signs and symptoms:
- Feel short of breath.
- Feel nauseous.
- Have a cold sweat.
- Feel dizzy or light-headed, Some people have also described feeling generally unwell or “Not quite right”.
*If you think you might be having a heart attack get help fast! Call Triple Zero (000)* and ask for an ambulance.
Guided by your Doctor and supported by our private nurses, our caregivers can help you manage your heart disease. Some tips for those with cardiac problems include:
Diet – It is important to eat nutritional food including fruit and vegetables and lean cuts of meat. Try to avoid salt and highly processed foods and eat smaller portion sizes.
Exercise – The more activity you do, the better your cardiovascular health. Start slow with realistic goals, 30 minutes most days of the week for about two and a half hours total each week.
Medication – Take medication on time and have them reviewed when you see your Cardiologist or Doctor.
Appointments – Keep your Cardiologist and Doctor appointments; you need to be checked on a regular basis to inform them of any changes and to ensure you condition is not getting any worse.
Our private nurses and caregivers can help you with any of the healthy heart approaches, we offer care on an hourly, 24 hour and Live in Care basis. We can help with personal care, respite, shopping, appointments and medication supervision. Other tasks specific to your needs, can be negotiated. Our care plans are based on individual requirements and can be reviewed and/or changed at any time.
*If you would like any more information please call one of our friendly office staff who will be more than happy to answer your questions.