Southampton, NY—February kicks off American Heart Month and the American Heart Association’s “Go Red for Women” campaign. Stony Brook Southampton Hospital is a proud supporter of both initiatives and is encouraging the East End community to learn about the risk factors and symptoms associated with heart disease. The Hospital is hosting a Heart Health Open House on Friday, February 9 from 9:30-10:30 a.m. in the Wellness Classroom on the third floor. Staff from the Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation department will be available to answer questions and provide free heart health screenings, healthy food tastings, and more. Call (631) 726-8620 for more information.
When it comes to matters of the heart, women differ greatly from men. One in three women will die from cardiovascular disease, making it the leading cause of death among females—in fact, more women die from heart disease than from all forms of cancer combined. Heart disease rates in younger women, aged 35-54, are increasing as well.
Unlike men, who tend to experience chest pain or pressure, symptoms of heart disease in women include feeling a burning sensation (not just in the chest, but in the neck, back, arms or abdomen), lightheadedness, shortness of breath, nausea, sweating, and possible anxiety. It is important to call 911 immediately when experiencing any symptoms of heart complications.
The positive side of heart disease for both men and women is that it can be prevented, and risk factors can be reduced. Getting a minimum of 30 minutes of physical activity a day (or 150 minutes per week) can greatly reduce a person’s risk, as does eating a heart-healthy diet rich in nutrient-dense foods such as fruits and vegetables, and staying away from processed foods that are high in sodium, sugar, and refined carbohydrates. Managing stress is also important.
There are many programs and services available this month through The Ed & Phyllis Davis Wellness Institute that can help with reducing heart disease risk. “Nourishing A Healthy Heart,” a free nutritional workshop that focuses on maintaining a heart-healthy diet and lifestyle, will take place Monday, February 19 from 9:30-10:30 a.m. in the Wellness Classroom on the Hospital’s third floor. Yoga, meditation, and tai chi classes, as well as massage, acupuncture, and reiki therapies, are available as well and can offer great stress-relieving benefits. Call (631) 726-8800 or visit hamptonswellnessinstitute.org for more information.
“It’s important to know the risks and symptoms associated with heart disease, and to take action to reduce them,” said Jessica Swiatocha, MSN, FNP-BC, Manager of Wellness Services and Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation at Stony Brook Southampton Hospital. “People who are at risk for heart disease benefit from a supervised cardiac rehabilitation program, which we offer at the Hospital. Studies show that only 25 percent of eligible patients participate—however, cardiac rehab participation is associated with a markedly reduced risk of re-hospitalization as well as enhanced quality and quantity of life.”