AARP The Magazine (February/March 2022, page 22) had an interesting article entitled “10 Sneaky Signs You May Have Heart Disease” and many of them are completely unexpected. Things like bad breath and hip pain can actually be signs of heart disease. Check out the Top 10 signs from AARP:
- You struggle to breathe when lying flat : This can indicate fluid in the lungs, which is associated with heart failure;
- You have leg or hip pain while walking (or both). This could signal circulation problems in the legs, a potential sign of peripheral artery disease;
- You can’t rise to the occasion : This could signal a blood-flow problem, potentially caused by heart disease;
- Or get your juices flowing : Blood-flow issues aren’t just for men. A study found that 84% of men and 87% of women with heart failure reported some degree of sexual disfunction;
- You’re fatigued for no reason : This could be a sign of an obstructed coronary artery;
- You get up to pee in the middle of the night : A weak heart pumps less blood to the kidneys, which can cause fluid buildup and swollen ankles and leg. At bedtime, gravity drains fluid back to the heart, and the kidneys have more fluid to filter;
- Your breath could kill houseplants : Bad breath is caused by bacteria which can enter your bloodstream through bleeding or diseased gums, which is linked to inflammation, clogged arteries and stroke;
- You spot fatty growths : Known as xanthomas, these lesions feel like calcium deposits in the tendons, and they can indicate sky-high cholesterol;
- Your ankles are swollen : When the heart isn’t pumping blood efficiently, fluid can swell both legs; and
- You’re feeling nauseous : Unexplained queasiness could be a sign of heart failure.
Check with your doctor if you have any of these issues, particularly if it has been going on for some time.