September is National Atrial Fibrillation Awareness Month.
Atrial fibrillation is also called AFib or abbreviated AF. AFib is a caused by an arrhythmia or an irregular heartbeat which can lead to blood clots, stroke, heart failure, and other heart-related complications. At least 2.7 million Americans are living with atrial fibrillation. Many people living with AFib don’t even know they have it. Some don’t even experience symptoms. Untreated AF doubles the risk of heart-related complications and death. People with AF are also 5 times more likely to have a stroke. Many people are unaware of just how serious atrial fibrillation can be. CompassionCare Hospice of Las Vegas, Nevada knows how serious AFib can be. The most common signs of AFib are a fluttering heartbeat, shortness of breath, and lightheadedness. AF symptoms are very similar to those of a heart attack (chest discomfort). People with AF should know the signs of a stroke (F.A.S.T. – face drooping, arm weakness, speech difficulty, time to call 9-1-1). Aging increases your risk of Afib. High blood pressure, an underlying heart disease, drinking alcohol, family history, sleep apnea, athletes, and other chronic conditions can also increase your risk. AFib can happen to anybody. A heart-healthy lifestyle is the best way to lower your risk.