Not Valentines Day, Heart Month


Hope Fournier

Heart on display in science classroom for students to learn about the circulatory system.

Did you know that February is American Heart Month? American Heart Month is a time where everyone is encouraged to focus on their cardiovascular health. Heart disease is America’s primary killer, so many American organizations are pushing campaigns encouraging heart health. The American Heart Association’s “Heart to Heart: Why Losing One Woman Is Too Many,” campaign will raise awareness about how 1 in 3 women are diagnosed with heart disease annually, and 1 in 4 deaths in the United States are cardiovascular disease related. 

 Heart disease was the killer of 18.6 million people in 2019 alone. Alongside cardiovascular which is the #1 cause of death globally, and both diseases can start out in people in many ways. The most common way to contract heart disease is by not taking care of yourself: not working out, not eating right, etc. 

American Heart Month began in 1963, on December 30, when Congress decided to dedicate a month to those who struggle with heart disease, to show everyone how serious it is and why we need to acknowledge it more. Taking a stand against heart disease is even more important now than ever since the emergence of Covid-19. The pandemic has caused people who are affected by a cardiovascular disease to be afraid to go to a hospital, since the spread of the virus has killed so many. 

  At South Windsor High School, students who are impacted by heart disease sometimes need extra help. The school’s nurses have students dealing with heart/cardiovascular disease, and they are there for these students to give them medication, exams, take tests, etc. Heart disease is typically treated with medicine, a change in diet or exercise, and surgery in life threatening cases. School nurse, Mrs. Miklas, said that most of the medicines used for treating heart disease usually widen the patient’s arteries and/or reduce blood pressure. 

 If you are worried about eventually getting heart disease, you can start a healthy lifestyle now, because heart disease can be preventable! Having a cardiovascular disease is a very scary diagnosis, but there are ways you can get ahead of it and start preventing it. Some easy ways to keep up your health are to not smoke, exercise regularly, change your diet as needed to make it healthier and have regular doctor check up appointments. Even though cardiovascular disease is still a very prominent issue in society, the death rates thankfully have been decreasing every year, even by just a small amount. Nothing is scarier than your health being at risk, so take the steps to change your lifestyle sooner rather than later!