Listen As Mellanie True Hills explains what caused her Afib/Atrial Fibrillation.
Mellanie True Hills:
My atrial fibrillation was really caused by a variety of different things, and I never could figure out exactly what it was. Sometimes it would be things like bending over, to wash the dog, or to pull an email on my computer. Other times it might be stress-related.
For some people it is related to food they eat or drinking alcohol, having caffeine, having chocolate; it’s different for everyone. In my own particular case, it did seem to be stress-related and if you go to the medical literature about atrial fibrillation, stress is never really even mentioned, but of the patients that I have interviewed who had atrial fibrillation, about three-fourth said that theirs was triggered frequently by stress.
Why is Afib a Problem?
You may have heard or read that atrial fibrillation is benign. That's not true.
By not getting enough oxygen to the body, afib can lead to heart and valve diseases, sleep apnea, and chronic fatigue. In addition, atrial fibrillation can lead to two potentially life-threatening conditions, congestive heart failure and stroke. It needs to be treated seriously.
Congestive heart failure results when your heart is overworked. The erratic electrical impulses that cause atrial fibrillation make the heart work too hard, and it becomes enlarged, ineffective, weak, and unable to pump oxygenated blood throughout the body and to the organs. Atrial fibrillation wears your heart out.
Detection of congestive heart failure is difficult. While weakness, fatigue, and shortness of breath may be symptoms of a heart attack, they may also be signs that you have congestive heart failure. By the time you recognize the symptoms, your heart is damaged. If you have any of these symptoms, talk with your doctor.
Congestive heart failure is particularly severe in afib patients with other significant heart problems, such as valve disease. The good news is that congestive heart failure can be repaired through a heart transplant.
Heart Survivor, Author, and Speaker Mellanie is a heart survivor and the author of A Woman's Guide to Saving Her Own Life: The HEART Program for Health & Longevity. After having a brush with death in emergency heart surgery, Mellanie now uses her second chance to coach individuals in creating healthy lifestyles and organizations in creating healthy, productive workplaces.
Heart disease is the #1 killer, and stroke is #3. In the US each day, we lose nearly 3,000 men and women to heart disease and stroke. Forty per cent of us will get, and die from, heart disease or stroke. But it is preventable, if you know what to do.
Women have different heart symptoms than men, and they're typically very subtle, so for women, the first symptom is frequently a heart attack. Knowing those symptoms can save your life.
Mellanie's mission is to spread awareness of how to save your own life. She provides a message of hope and encouragement, sharing how to take control, decrease stress, and protect against heart disease. Audiences consistently say, You changed my life.
To further this mission, Mellanie is the founder and CEO of the American Foundation for Women's Health.
Mellanie also works with organizations that want healthy, productive workplaces to decrease stress and keep employees healthy, including how to leverage technology and culture in doing so.
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