February is American Heart Month
Your heart is one of your most important organs. It is constantly moving blood around the body to all the other vital organs to keep you alive. Because of this, it is very important to take care of your heart and body.
The percentage of Americans with heart disease is increasing every year. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2016), 630,000 Americans die from heart disease each year- that’s 1 out of 4 deaths.
What is heart disease?
When someone says the word “heart disease” most people automatically think of a heart attack. What most people don’t know is that there are so many more conditions that fall under that category. Other kinds of heart disease may involve the valves in the hear, or hte heart may not pump well and cause heart failure. Some people are born with heart disease.
Types of heart disease can include:
- Coronary artery disease (narrowing of the arteries)- the most common type of heart disease.
- Heart failure
- Heart muscle disease
- Heart valve disease
- Unusual heart rhythmus
- Pericardial disease (tissue around the heart)
- Vascular disease (blood vessel disease)
According to the CDC, high blood pressure, high LDL cholesterol and smoking are all key heart disease risk factors. Others include:
- Overweight and obesity
- Physical inactivity
- Excessive alcohol use
When someone around you starts to suffer from a heart attack they will have symptoms such as chest pain, erratic breathing, pale skin, and they will collapses. But what do you do next to help save them? Today the American Heart Association suggests the hands-only CPR approach. With this new change, people’s chances of survival who suffer from a heart attack have increased. Before the hands-only CPR approach the survival rate from a heart attack outside of a hospital was about 6% – now the percentage has increased to about 12%.
Here are the steps you should follow at the start of a heart attack:
- Check to see if they will respond to your call or touch.
- Call 911.
- Start doing 100 chest compressions per minute to the tune and rhythm of “Staying Alive”.
- Once you become tired switch with someone around you. If not, continue till paramedics arrive.
Our employees have put together this funny, educational video to teach when and how to use hands-only CPR to save a life.