Over the past several generations of Americans, we have seen changes in technology and lifestyle affect the health of the people. However, changes in lifestyle include increasing intake of fast food and decreasing physical activity, especially since the preferred activity done by children and teenagers is using their gadgets indoors. These risk factors greatly predispose a person to developing heart disease, the number one killer of men and women in America. It says something that cardiac problems are the leading cause of death between the two genders, with their different biological makeup and lifestyle habits. Learning how you can manage a cardiac emergency should be on your list of things to learn.
Tell me more about cardiac disease.
There are different kinds of cardiac disease that plague Americans, the most common being Coronary Artery Disease or CAD. CAD happens when fat builds up inside our blood vessels, blocking and slowing the flow of blood through the body. This is particularly dangerous when the blockages happen in our coronary arteries – because these arteries supply the heart with blood. If the heart isn’t getting enough oxygen, it can stop functioning completely, leading to cardiac arrest.
There are many risk factors that contribute to the development of heart disease, particularly an uhealthy lifestyle. Lifestyle choices include diet, exercises, and vices, with an unhealthy mix of the three causing heart problems.
- A diet with high intake of fat, bad cholesterol (LDL), and salt can lead to a deposit of fatty plaques in the body as well as hypertension.
- Sedentary lifestyle and lack of regular exercise can lead to obesity or being overweight, also factors for developing heart disease.
- Vices, particular smoking, introduce carcinogens to the body such as nicotine. Nicotine causes constriction of our blood vessels and damages them. This can cause buildup of plaques in the vessels and hypertension.
What can I do to stop it? And what do I do when I can’t?
Since you are aware of the different factors that contribute to the disease, avoiding them and leading a healthy lifestyle is the best option. Have a healthy diet with a normal intake of fat and sodium, exercise at least three times a week, and do not smoke or use nicotine. However, in the event of a heart attack, the best thing you can do is act quickly and give the victim CPR.
When you train in CPR, enroll in any of the following American CPR courses with our providers and get the best educational experience possible.
- Basic CPR – Heartsaver
- Basic CPR for HCPs – Heartsaver C
- Basic Life Support for HCPs
- Basic Life Support for HCPs re-certification
- Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS)
- ACLS re-certification
- Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS)
- PALS re-certification
All of the courses listed above can be found in all six of our training providers in the US. We award all our students with certificates that are valid for 2 years before they have to be renewed (through re-certification).