American Heart Month is celebrated countrywide during the month of February. Sponsored by the American Heart Association (AHA), the 2015 event is a special effort to raise awareness about coronary artery disease (CAD) and the importance of detection, treatment and prevention.
Heart disease is the number one cause of death for men and women in the United States. Reports say that this disease kills an estimated 630,000 Americans each year. It is estimated that every year, 1 in 4 deaths are caused by heart disease. As per the 2015 Heart Disease and Stroke Statistics Update published by the AHA, someone in the U.S. dies from heart disease once every 90 seconds.
The month of February was officially designated as American Heart Month in 1963, with an objective to urge Americans to join the battle against heart disease. The 2015 campaign focuses on educating people about this debilitating disease and how they can prevent it – both at home and in the community.
Since, 2004, February has also been the signature month for "AHA’s Go Red for Women Campaign" which focuses on the message that heart disease is not only a man’s problem. "National Wear Red Day" was held this year on February 6 with the aim to educate women about the silent symptoms of heart attacks and how their symptoms are different from those experienced by men.
This month-long celebration will see healthcare providers and rehabilitation centers across the US joining hands to promote awareness about this deadly disease and help people improve heart health.
It is estimated that nearly half of all Americans have at least one major risk factor for heart disease, though many people don’t know about it and others are slow to act upon the warnings. American Heart Month is a strong platform to make people understand the risk factors associated with cardiovascular disease, such as obesity, smoking, physical inactivity, high blood pressure, diabetes and cholesterol. Maintaining a healthy diet combined with regular exercise helps control these risk factors. An ideal option could be to enroll in the weight loss sessions, smoking cession programs, and exercise programs that reliable health care centers offer. Managed by certified professionals with relevant experience, these programs are designed to help people maintain a healthy lifestyle.
As President Obama said, "This month, let us reaffirm our resolve to fight this epidemic and continue our work to build a brighter future for our families".