Saturday, September 29th marks International World Heart Day, and we could all do with some small improvements to our daily routine to help towards a happy heart.
Unfortunately, there are 10, 000 strokes in Ireland every year. Most of these occur in older adults over the age of 65, however a stroke can occur at any age and without warning. The Irish Heart Foundation’s F.A.S.T campaign helps with identifying the signs of a possible stroke. F.A.S.T stands for the following and is easy to remember. F is for fascial weakness, such as loss of control of the fascial muscles. A for arm weakness, S for problems with speech, and T..Time to call 999.
Knowing the risk factors can allow us to make small changes to our weekly routine. Risk factors of developing a heart condition include high blood pressure, smoking, physical inactivity, high cholesterol, poor diet, being overweight and drinking too much alcohol. Medications such as painkillers, and anti-inflammatory drugs in particular diclofenac have been linked with ‘increased risk of major adverse cardiovascular events'(British Journal of medicine), so reduce intake where possible.
The good news is there are ways to help prevent against stroke and other cardiovascular conditions. Eating well, and decreasing your intake of fat, salt and sugar will help. This directly helps towards weight control. Have your blood pressure and cholesterol checked regularly by your Doctor. Decreasing stress and knowing your family history are also important. Part taking in at least 30 minutes of exercise a day is recommended, whether it be a walk with the dog in the park or a Pilates or yoga class. Get started on your way to a happy healthy heart today.💖
Dunboyne Physiotherapy Clinic, Dunboyne, Co. Meath