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Cold weather is generally considered as healthy season in our part of the world. But if you have existing heart problems then getting expose to excessive cold can trigger heart issues. Among people with existing heart problems, chest pain and heart attacks are common during winter.
We connected with Dr Bipeenchandra Bhamre, Consultant Cardiac Surgeon at Sir H. N. Reliance Foundation Hospital and Research Centre in Mumbai, to understand how winter increases heart-related problems.
Though winter is pleasant, the cold weather can raise the risk of a variety of health issues. The drop in temperature can aggravate heart problems. The cold weather can cause the blood vessels to contract and increase the blood pressure and thus chances of heart attack and stroke. Moreover, angina (chest pain due to coronary heart disease) can also be noticed in winter when coronary arteries constrict due to cold weather and the sudden drop in temperature.
As the temperature drops, one's body and heart will have to work harder to maintain a healthy body temperature. This can increase the pressure on the heart and raise the risk of heart attack, heart failure, and arrhythmia during winter. In winter, heart attacks occur more often in the early morning, which is linked to morning BP surge.
Moreover, people tend to stress themselves a lot during winter and this also invites heart problems. According to various studies, low temperature can constrict the blood vessels, leading to hypertension and aggregate the blood clotting process.
Given the above reasons, it is crucial to take utmost care of your heart during winter, especially those with existing health problems.
Severe chest pain is the most common symptom of heart attacks. Other red flags of impending heart attack include shortness of breath; pain or discomfort in the arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach; nausea or vomiting, dizziness, cold sweat, sensation of heartburn, sudden fatigue.
Warning signs and symptoms of a stroke: A droop or uneven smile on a person's face; Arm numbness or weakness; Slurred speech; vision troubles, in one or both eyes; fatigue; and trouble walking.
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