7 Heart Health Myth Busters

Heart Health Myth Busters

The heart is a vital organ and its health is central to our overall well being. It’s therefore alarming to see so many myths are being peddled (and believed) about the best ways to keep the heart healthy.

Before considering whether or not you need to see a cardiologist in Singapore, you must be able to separate the science from the fiction. Knowledge is power, and the more factual information you have about your health, the more informed your future choices will be.

At The Harley Street Heart and Vascular Center, Singapore, we aim to ensure each and every patient receives not only optimal care, but a full education on maintaining good heart health in the future.

Here are 7 myths about the heart that we’d like to bust open.

Myths about Heart Health

1) Heart disease only affects the elderly

Heart Health Myth Busters

The risk of developing cardiovascular disease increases with age. But that doesn’t mean young people are immune. There has been an increased prevalence of heart disease in younger people in recent years. This is possibly due to a rise in other correlative conditions such as obesity and diabetes. You are also more likely to experience a heart problem in your younger years if you have a family history of premature heart disease. Therefore, whether you are 20 or 80, it is important to prioritize your heart health. You can book in to see a cardiologist in Singapore no matter your age or family history.

2) Heart attacks are easily spotted

Typically, a heart attack is characterized by shortness of breath, a crushing sensation in the chest, arm pain and drowsiness. But according to Harvard Health, about half of all heart attacks are mistaken for something else. These are known as ‘silent heart attacks’ because you do not automatically spot the symptoms. An alarming study in the Nov. 10, 2015, Journal of the American Medical Association showed that of 2000 healthy people aged 45 to 84, 8% of them had myocardial scars 10 years later, indicating they’d had a heart attack. Yet 80% of them were unaware that they had experienced one. Furthermore, the occurrence of myocardial scars was 5 times higher in men than in women. This demonstrates the urgency of having regular heart check ups with a cardiologist in Singapore.

3) You’re guaranteed heart problems if they run in your family

When cardiovascular disease runs in families, it doesn’t automatically mean you’re going to develop a problem too. But it does mean you’re at increased risk by about 65-75% if your parent has had premature heart disease. The good news is, knowledge is power. By knowing your family history, you can take preventive measures to ensure your heart is in good shape, and spot any developing issues early. When attending an appointment at the Harley Street Heart and Vascular Center, you will be asked about your family history in depth, so please equip yourself with as much information as you can.

4) Heart attack and cardiac arrest are the same thing

Heart Health Myth Busters

A heart attack is not the same as a cardiac arrest. A heart attack is something that occurs when oxygen rich blood cannot flow properly towards the heart due to an arterial blockage. This is considered an emergency and an ambulance should be called straight away. Medical interventions can then assist in removing the blockage, allowing blood to flow normally again. A cardiac arrest is a life threatening emergency whereby the heart stops pumping blood altogether and the patient stops breathing. Both incidents are very serious and it is important to take preventive measures to maintain good heart health to decrease the risk of these events occurring. Speaking to a cardiologist in Singapore is a good first step.

5) Very active people don’t have heart attacks

Heart Health Myth Busters

Regular, moderate exercise is good for your heart health. But it does not completely prevent heart disease. You may have heard of marathon runners who go into cardiac arrest after a challenging race. This can happen sometimes because extreme physical exertion can put too much strain on the heart, causing cardiac arrest - a life threatening situation. When a person has an undiagnosed heart condition, the risk of this happening increases more. If you are about to start a physical challenge, such as training for a marathon, it is a good idea to see a cardiologist at the Harley Street Heart and Vascular Center, Singapore.

6) Symptoms of heart problems occur in the upper body

Heart Health Myth Busters

While it's true that some symptoms of a heart condition will occur in the upper body (such as pressure in the chest, breathing problems and lightheadedness), there are lower body symptoms that can also indicate a heart problem. For example, if you have lower limb pain it could be a sign of peripheral artery disease. This means that the arteries in the lower limb are becoming obstructured due to a buildup of plaque. This then obstructs the arteries, which can increase the likelihood of having a heart attack or stroke. If you have lower limb pain, you should see your doctor right away.

7) You only need a checkup if something feels wrong

As you’ve already read, heart problems can happen to anyone, at any time. They can also be hard to spot. Whether you are fit and well, worried about your susceptibility to heart disease, or experiencing active symptoms, here at the Harley Street Heart and Vascular Center we can help.

A checkup involves an initial registration and consultation with the best cardiologist in Singapore. You will be asked about any symptoms you’re experiencing, your family history and your lifestyle. Relevant tests will be performed to ascertain any underlying conditions. From there, a treatment plan will be created if necessary.

The Bottom Line

Don’t listen to the heart myths. Instead, have a talk with a qualified and experienced cardiologist in Singapore. They will help you understand the facts about your heart and any developing condition you might have. Knowledge is power - and having accurate knowledge about your heart health will mean making healthier lifestyle choices going forward.

Talk To Us

Whatever your circumstances, book an appointment to see a trained and experienced Cardiologist in Singapore.

Dr Reginald Liew
MA (Camb), MBBS (Hons, Lond), PhD (Lond), FRCP (Lond), FESC (Europe), FACC (USA), FAsCC (Asean)
Dr Liew is a senior consultant cardiologist with a specialist interest in cardiac arrhythmias and device implantation and performs catheter ablation for complex cardiac arrhythmias, including atrial fibrillation. Dr Liew studied medicine at Cambridge University UK and performed his sub-speciality training in London, UK.

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