Women are natural caretakerswhether it’s in the form of a mother, sister, daughter or a partner. More often than not women are so busy caring for everyone else, that their own health and wellbeing slips to bottom of the list. Sounds familiar? If so, for the sake of your loved ones and for your heart, start making you and your health a priority. Take time to understand how likely you are to develop heart disease and what you can do to prevent it. Did you know? Each year more women die of heart disease than men yet, heart disease and related risk factors are often missed in women.
Symptoms of coronary heart disease and heart attack are different in women than their male counterparts. Women are also less likely to receive optimal treatment for certain heart condition. Even though heart disease tends to strike later in life it can happen at any age. The usual suspects of heart disease are smoking, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, obesity, physical inactivity, family history of early heart disease, older age. High blood pressure or diabetes during pregnancy can increase long term risk of hypertension and diabetes that increases the risk of development of heart disease in mothers. Women with inflammatory disease like Rheumatoid arthritis and Lupus have increased risk of heart disease
Estrogen once thought to have protective role in development of heart disease, as it reduces blood pressure, blunts the effect of stress hormone at time of stress, and is a natural antioxidant, but it also promotes clot formation, so hormone replacement therapy containing Estrogen once thought to protect against heart disease are now known to increase the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Some usual facts are that women are more likely to have disease that affects smaller arteries, these are actually dysfunction of arteries rather than blockage. Spontaneous dissection ( tear) in coronary arteries, Broken heart syndrome - despite the name it can happen with good or bad emotional excitement and occur more commonly in females. Chemo or radio therapy for breast cancer can damage your heart both acutely and in future.
Although many women have classic crushing chest pain which is hallmark of heart attack, at least one third will have typical symptoms like extreme tiredness, nausea, feeling dizzy, indigestion, palpitation. Treatment options are medicines, coronary angioplasty and stenting, or coronary artery bypass grafting. Historically treatments have been based on clinical studies that included mostly men. In fact less than twenty five percent of participants have been women. The good news is that as research continues to evolve and include women of all race and ethnicities, research are beginning to find diagnostic and therapeutic approaches that are better matched to women with CAD.
While men and women have similar rate of hospitalisation, women tend to have longer hospital stays, receive less of recommended treatment and experience greater long term disability. Women are less likely to return to work following a CVD related hospital admission and have lower health related quality of life following an event. These are important reasons for women to be educated about, what they can do to prevent heart disease and type of treatment that should be recommended if they have heart disease.
Cardiac rehabilitation is a 12 weeks programme that includes supervised exercise, nutrition counselling, stress management, assistance to quit smoking and education about the disease process. Studies showed that people who attend cardiac rehabilitation have fewer returns to hospital and better quality of life.
With this knowledge, women can advocate their own best health care. My advice to women is to do one good thing for your heart everyday. Protect your heart by making healthy choices that are right for you.
After having sugarcane juice by the roadside they ended the shopping session and boarded another jampacked bus home.
“Next time I will remember to withdraw money from my bank before I go shopping in MG market. I didn’t know so many street vendors still prefer cash to credit cards,” said Tara.
By the time they reached home, they were exhausted. Tara’s face twitched as she fumbled through all the bags they were carrying. “My purse...it’s gone…”
Baby checked all the bags once more.
“What a mess...” Tara dug into her pant pockets. “Luckily, I kept the house keys in my pocket.”
Baby fished out a mobile phone from her handbag. “Let me call your phone. Maybe your purse has just fallen somewhere nearby.”
Opening the door, Tara looked at the family photo hanging on the wall in the living room and sighed. “Huh! My credit cards are doomed if someone has stolen my purse!” She quickly got down to dialling the banks to block her cards while Baby kept dialling Tara’s phone number.“it’s ringing. But nobody’s picking up.” “Keep trying!” said Tara. A minute later she caught Baby smiling, cupping her phone and whispering, “Got the bugger, madam…”
Baby turned to the phone and spoke frantically, “Yes, you keep everything you have found in the purse. I just need the restaurant bill. It is very important to me. I will pay you money for it.”
Tara’s eyes widened. Baby continued her talk. “Yes, I will give you two thousand rupees for the bill. Meet me at the water tank bus stop in an hour’s time. I will call you when I reach there.”
Tara yelled, “You uneducated fool! Why are you offering to pay two thousand rupees for a restaurant bill? What’s wrong with you? My PAN card, Aadhar card, credit cards were all in there…if my husband and kids hear about this, I will be the laughing stock for years.”
“I know how to fix this. Trust me, madam. You stay calm till I return,” said Baby and walked out of the door.
Waiting for Baby to return, Tara blocked all her credit cards and polished off a pack of potato fries.
Baby entered the house two hours later with the prized purse. “Except for the money, you will find everything in there.”
“How?” asked Tara, checking all the contents of her purse.
“I have friends in the local police station. I got two of them to accompany me to the bus stop. Your purse lover turned out to be a first-time thief.”
Tara hugged Baby. “I am so happy I have a smart person like you in my life.” Baby beamed. It was the first time Tara madam had called her smart. We
Happiness is a mystery like religion, and should never be rationalized.Waiting for Baby to return, Tara blocked all her credit cards and polished off a pack of potato fries. Baby entered the house two hours later with the prized purse.
How, just a bus ride away checking away... her purse