Affinity Health Clinic Recognizes 50th Anniv. of American Heart Month

February 5, 2014 by Molly Huff

In 1964, President Lyndon B. Johnson declared February "American Heart Month," and 50 years later we are still recognizing this month as the time to focus on fundraising, education and awareness about heart disease and heart health.

The fight against cardiovascular disease has proven extremely successful. As of 1960, about 662,000 Americans died each year because of heart disease, and 924,000 from all forms of cardiovascular disease. As of 2010, those figures were below 600,00 and 784,000.

As a supporter of American Heart Month, Affinity would like to be sure you know the warning signs of heart attack and stroke. Knowing the signs and getting help could mean the difference between life and death. Affinity's cardiology department is here to help you with all of your heart problem questions and can make an appointment for you or a loved one today with our cardiologist.

Heart Attack Warning Signs:

  • Discomfort in the center of the chest that lasts more than a few minutes, or that goes away and come back. This may feel like uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain.
  • Discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck jaw or stomach.
  • Shortness of breath with or without chest discomfort.
  • Sudden cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness.

Stroke Warning Signs:

  • Face drooping or numbness on one side.
  • Arm weakness in one arm.
  • Speech difficulty - slurred speech and difficulty speaking.

Keeping your heart healthy or rehabilitating your heart back to health is very important. Some ways to keep or get that heart healthy are:

  • Good nutrition - healthy cooking and eating and heart-smart foods.
  • Physical activity - find motivation and get moving!
  • Weight management - losing weight and keeping it off.
  • Stress management - get control of your stress and learn how to deal with it in a healthy way.
  • Healthy kids! Parents can help their child develop healthy habits early in life that will bring lifelong benefits.
  • Quit smoking. Find a program that works for you, and stick with it.

Visit the American Heart Association's website to learn more about how you can help advocate American Heart Month and also how to keep your heart healthy and ways to improve your quality of life. It's always a good idea to get a heart check up as well - our Affinity cardiologist, Dr. Paul Murray, works with patients to diagnosis and treat cardiovascular disorders - and develops individualized plans for heart health. Call Affinity today to make an appointment.