When blood supply to the heart muscle is limited or slow, you will suffer a lot of pain; this condition is commonly known as Angina. The cause for the blood flow restriction is the hardening of arteries. Sometimes, the arteries will narrow down; and this is also a cause for the poor blood supply to the heart. The pain is often deep and dull and can affect the surrounding areas including the left arm, jaw, back and neck. Physical activity or stress will often trigger an attack that is referred to as an Angina attack. This attack does not last too long.
Types of Angina
There are two major types of this condition and the first – and probably most common type is stable Angina. This is when the trigger is obvious or more prominent. For example, some people will suffer an attack after an exercise session. The second type is called unstable Angina where the cause or trigger is unknown and more unpredictable. The stable type is often seen to lead to the unstable angina although this does not happen to all people. The stable kind is not a medical emergency but when it becomes more unpredictable and unstable, there must be medical intervention because it puts the patient at risk of suffering from a heart attack or stroke. In this regard, unstable Angina should not be left untreated.
As alluded to above, the cause of this condition is the hardening and narrowing of blood vessels in the heart; this state is medically referred to as atherosclerosis. People will increase their chances of suffering from this if they smoke or are overweight. Age is another prominent cause of atherosclerosis. A diet high in saturated fats is also another culprit that can cause this condition. There are various treatment options available as highlighted below.
Medication to reduce the symptoms of Angina attacks is usually the first line of treatment offered. This greatly reduces the chance of suffering from a stroke or having a heart attack. Some medications will be taken upon suffering an attack while others will be taken daily as a matter of precaution. Surgery is another treatment option which works by widening the arteries that have become narrowed. This is also commonly referred to as a heart bypass surgery. Other elements that work in managing or treating the condition is employing a healthy lifestyle. A proper diet without saturated fats is excellent. Physical activity to avoid obesity also helps the overall treatment regiment. Those who smoke can also consider quitting.
Those affected most by Angina
This condition has been seen to affect older people more. In addition, men tend to suffer more with Angina compared to women. Having said this, the risk factors mentioned above will make any person prone to suffering; no matter their age or gender. When this problem is not treated and managed, it can worsen leading to strokes and heart attacks – this cannot be overemphasized. In this regard, preventing the condition will go a long way in helping people lead a fruitful and happier life.