Many people think that heart disease is more of a problem for men, but that simply is not true. Today, in the United States, heart disease is the #1 leading cause of death among women. So it makes sense that there should be some time dedicated to raising awareness about and focusing on the need for prevention as well as understanding of possible symptoms.
Women’s Heart Week offers a full seven days to home in on the facts and encourage women to take steps that will help them live heart-healthy and heart-happy lives!
History of Women’s Heart Week
The first celebration of Women’s Heart Week was organized by the Women’s Heart Foundation to coincide with Women’s Heart Health Month, celebrated all throughout February. And February is a time when people are already thinking about love and “hearts” (after all, it’s Valentine’s Day). While, admittedly, this is a slightly different kind of heart, it still seems like the perfect time to draw attention to the issue of women’s heart health!
Because heart disease can look a little different in women than in men, diagnoses are often missed or symptoms are dismissed. Some women who have heart attacks are even told that their symptoms are all in their head and are sent home by a doctor – sometimes diagnosed with a mental illness instead.
This is why it is so vitally important for women to be educated about the signs and symptoms, taking their heart health into their own hands and learning to advocate for themselves. Women’s Heart Week is just the time to do it!
How to Celebrate Women’s Heart Week
Take action against this #1 killer of men and women in the US by joining in with Women’s Heart Week using some of these ideas:
Learn Signs and Symptoms of Heart Disease
Every woman should be armed with the information she needs to understand what might be going on in her own body, including her heart. And Women’s Heart Week acts as an ideal spotlight to shine on the various signs and symptoms that women can know.
Women who are concerned about their heart health should see a healthcare professional. Here are some things to look for or be aware of:
- Chest pain, ache or heaviness, called angina
- Pain in the throat, jaw or neck
- Pain in the back or upper abdomen
- Nausea, vomiting, fatigue
Consider Some Facts About Women’s Heart Health
Get educated and share with others in person or on social media to improve education in honor of Women’s Heart Week. Get started with some of these important facts:
Among females aged 20 and older, close to 45% (over 60 million) are living with some form of cardiovascular disease
Research has shown that only about half (56%) of women realize that cardiovascular disease is their number one killer
Heart disease causes 1 in every 3 deaths each year, more than all cancers combined
Stroke and heart disease can affect women of any age, meaning every woman should know her personal history, family history and risk factors