Have you heard of Takotsubo cardiomyopathy?
In school, we were taught that the heart is one of the strongest and hardest working muscle of our body. An average adult heart beats for 72 times per 60 seconds. Multiply that a hundred times a day, and over 3,600,000 times for 365 days.
To put it simply, the heart of a 70 year old man beat and pumps blood for more than 2.5 billion times. This is a true testament of the amazing dynamic strength and endurance of our heart.
However, despite being the strongest muscle, our heart has a limit in what it could take. Aside from keeping our hearts healthy by maintaining a well balanced diet, it is also just as important to keep our hearts from emotional stress. People all over the world face problems different from one another. The common denominator between people facing problems and challenges is that majority of them are not comfortable in sharing their dilemmas.
Some keep quiet of the difficult situation they are facing due to embarrassment, some do not seek help from others because they do not want to be a bother. However studies show that keeping problems to ourselves is a dangerous thing to do and we must change our old ways, if we want to keep our hearts healthy.
Apparently to die from a broken heart is not just a song anymore. And a picture of a jagged heart symbol does not give it justice anymore either. Scientists found out that a broken heart poses health risks and danger to your heart and not only to your emotional well being.
First discovered in Japan in year 1990, The Broken Heart Syndrome or also known as, Takotsubo cardiomyopathy, is a real heart condition inflicted by emotional stress, such as a bad break-up, a death of a family, frustrations, and other severe emotional stress. Which is why the Broken Heart Syndrome is also called as stress-induced cardiomyopathy.
If you are still having a hard time believing what you have read, take into account the number of more than 3,000 adults diagnosed with the Broken Heart Syndrome. More than 90% of the adult with this heart condition are women. And 5% of women who had a heart attack suffer from this as well.
As ‘lightly’ as the name of the condition sounds, The Broken Heart Syndrome is not a laughing matter and should not be taken lightly. For further understanding, this is how Takotsubo Cardiomyopathy actually works…
The build up of stress “stuns” the heart, which causes changes to the heart muscle cells which affects the left ventricle from contracting effectively. When the left ventricle has totally weakened, symptoms listed below can be observed to the people who have this condition as per Harvard Health Publishing website.
- Chest pain
- Shortness of breathing due to severe physical or emotional stress
- abnormal movements in the left ventricle
- ballooning of the left ventricle
Experts say that the Broken Heart Syndrome is quite the same as having a heart attack. The only difference is that, in this unique heart condition, coronary artery obstruction cannot be observed, and also, the patient can recover within a month.
Dr. Dana Dawson, a scientist and researcher that studies The Broken Heart Syndrome, has also noted that women are more prone to having this condition than men.
Scientists have not yet discovered why, however what is certain is that it is caused by severe emotional and/or physical stress. What is even more alarming is that, scientists have discovered that the damage sustained by the heart after suffering from this condition remained.
If you find yourself facing a difficult situation in your life, do not be afraid to seek advice, or help, or simply look for an ear that is ready to listen. After all, everything that has weight gets lighter to carry if someone is helping you carry it.
You do not have to share your problem to the entire world, just a friend, or a member of the family, or your spouse is enough. Telling what’s bothering you can come off as awkward and uncomfortable at first, but you will sure be surprised by how lightweight your heart would feel after.
If you really are the type of people who is allergic to sharing what is going on your mind, then it is advisable to look for an outlet that will lighten your stress. Simply plugging your earphones and listening to the calming sound of the waves crashing on the beach can do wonder!
Remember, your heart is the most hardworking muscle of your body, keep it healthy all the time – share what is stressing you!
Learn more about the ‘broken heart syndrome’ also known as Takotsubo cardiomyopathy, watch the video below brought to you by the Mayo Clinic.