The most common symptom of heart disease is chest pain, but some people mistake for indigestion or heartburn. In many cases, heart disease symptoms go unnoticed until the condition is severe. When this happens, a heart attack or stroke may be the first sign of trouble.
For those with progressed heart disease, symptoms may include:
Accumulated plaque on your artery walls, a condition called atherosclerosis, causes heart disease.
Such build-ups cause your arteries to narrow and restricts blood flow. It becomes particularly dangerous when a blood clot forms, as these clots can block the artery and stop blood flow altogether.
When plaque blocks blood flow to the heart, you may have a heart attack. When a blood clot blocks an artery to the brain, you may have a stroke.
The three main risk factors for heart disease are:
To reduce your risk of heart disease, Dr. Souidi recommends quitting smoking. He also suggests other preventive measures, including regular blood pressure and cholesterol checks. That allows him to monitor your risk factors and addresses any issues if they arise.
Dr. Souidi also recommends reaching and maintaining a healthy weight. He encourages all patients with a risk of cardiovascular disease to get at least 30 minutes of exercise most days of the week.
He also advocates for a heart-healthy diet, which includes limiting sodium and eating:
Stress-reducing activities, such as meditation, yoga, or deep breathing exercises, are also beneficial.
If lifestyle changes aren’t enough to lower your blood pressure or cholesterol, Dr. Souidi may prescribe a medication to assist; sometimes, multiple prescriptions may be necessary.
If you have significant plaque buildup, he may recommend a cardiac catheterization, also called a heart cath, to determine the severity of your condition and examine your heart and arteries.
If you’re at risk for heart disease, don’t wait until you have a heart attack or stroke. Seek the care of a board-certified physician. Call Dr. Souidi’s office today to schedule your appointment or book it online now.