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The Lowdown on Heart Disease

With all the holidays goin' down in February like Valentine's Day and Groundhog Day, you might forget that it's also American Heart Month. Heart disease, which is also called cardiovascular disease, is the number one cause of death in the US. Learn more about it right here.

A Heart-to-Heart With Your Heart

The human heart is a muscle that works like a pump. The right side of the heart receives "blue" blood from the body and pumps it to the lungs to add oxygen. The left side receives this re-oxygenated "red" blood from the lungs and pumps it back out to the body.

Different Types of Heart Disease

If the heart and blood vessels don't pump properly, you can get sick and have heart disease.

  • Congenital Heart Disease - Congenital heart disease is the kind that you're born with, but it's not that common. It can be caused by heredity or viral diseases like the German measles.
  • Acquired Heart Disease - Acquired heart disease develops sometime during childhood as a result of illnesses like rheumatic fever.
  • Arrhythmia - Arrhythmia is an abnormal rhythm of the heart. Normally, the heart beats at 50-150 beats per minute, but a person's heart can beat very fast (tachycardia) or very slow (bradycardia).
  • Heart Murmurs - A heart murmur is a whooshing sound between each heartbeat. The whoosh isn't serious, but is just an extra noise that the blood makes as it flows through the heart. However, sometime murmurs can be a symptom of larger problems.

What Are the Symptoms?

How Is it Treated?

Doctors who specialize in the heart are called cardiologists. They perform a series of tests to check your heart. A chest x-ray shows if the heart is enlarged, an electrocardiogram (EKG) checks the heart rhythm, and an echocardiogram (an ultrasound) looks at the heart's structure and function. If you're four or older, you may also have to do an exercise stress test to evaluate your heart and lungs.

Did U Know?

  • About 40,000 kids are born with heart disease every year.
  • So far, at least 35 different kinds of heart disease have been identified.
  • Eating a healthy diet and exercising regularly lower the risk of heart disease.
  • One of the things that make health insurance affordable is group rates.
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What Causes Heart Disease?

  • Genetics.
  • Eating too many high-fat foods.
  • Smoking.
  • All of the above.

Dear Dish-It In The Forums

Froggers
theres this guy that i really REALLY like, im not sure if he likes me back. i put my mobile # on a piece of paper and slipped it in his locker, he hasn't texted or called me yet. Today at lunch i asked his friend to ask if he likes anyone but his friend keeps lying to me and won't tell me if he said anything. The guy and I were best friends in 5th grade but now that we're in different classes we don't talk much anymore. My friends said that i have a chance with him and that we have a lot in common, but im pretty sure he likes this other girl but im also pretty sure he likes me. I want to make a move but i don't wanna end our friendship i don't know what to do.
reply about 3 hours
LUCYQWERTY123
LUCYQWERTY123 posted in Friends:
it can be anyone u want but it should be someone who has the true friendship qualities and trust-worhtiness :) :)
reply about 11 hours
drowning
drowning posted in Friends:
It's good to have both to talk too about things. But, what's the point of being with someone if you can't trust them enough to even tell them things?
reply about 17 hours
drowning
drowning posted in Friends:
@AmayahG I had a friend for eight years whom I thought was my best friend. But, turned out that she lied to people a lot, including me. She also talked badly of me behind my back and blamed me for everything when all I ever did was be there when she needed me the most. Let her go before she really begins to weigh you down.
reply about 17 hours
Error44
Error44 posted in Friends:
Best friend or boy/girl friend? Which one is better for sharing secrets and talking?
reply about 21 hours