For the average person, getting an ECG test is not a common event. They are commonly administered before major surgery or if a heart problem is suspected, but typically, ECG tests are performed very rarely, and certainly not as part of preventative care. As a result, you and your doctor might not be aware of any changes in your heart rhythm over the course of your life as you never established your ECG baseline to compare your future tests against. There are, however, great benefits of monitoring your ECG often. Looking for deviations in your heart performance is important as it might signal early signs of a developing condition. And, with heart health related problems being the leading cause of death around the world, ECG tests are the best way to spot a heart condition before it develops into a serious problem such as heart attack or stroke.
When is it time to start building your heart health history?
It’s never too early, but if you answer any “yes” to any of the questions below, you should start thinking about an ECG test and your options when it comes to heart health monitoring long term.
Have you ever experienced heart palpitations?
Heart palpitations are heart beats that all of a sudden become more noticeable. You may feel that your heart beats irregularly, starts pounding or fluttering for a few seconds or minutes. In many cases these palpitations are harmless and are caused by lifestyle triggers such as stress, too much caffeine, or hormonal changes, but they can also be a sign of heart problem such as atrial fibrillation, atrial flutter or tachycardia. To pinpoint the cause of heart palpitations you will need to undergo a heart monitoring test also called Holter monitor test where a doctor evaluates the ECG trace to rule out a possible heart problem.
Have you ever experienced dizziness, fainting or shortness of breath?
There are many reasons why you might feel dizzy, lightheaded or short of breath and most have nothing to do with your heart but combined with other symptoms. However, all these symptoms can be the tell-tale of heart rhythm disorder, atrial flutter, blood pressure problem or pulmonary embolism, so if you experience them it is important to evaluate their cause.
Have you ever experienced chest pain?
Chest pain can be caused by anything from a muscle pull to a heart attack and it should never be ignored. If you ever develop severe chest pain you should immediately seek medical assistance. And although chest pain isn’t always caused by a problem with your heart, it can sometimes be a symptom of angina or a heart attack, both serious events related to restricted blood flow to the heart muscle.
Did your doctor order an electrocardiogram test to investigate a concern but the test didn’t find a cause?
If you or your doctor suspected a heart related problem but only ran an electrocardiogram, it is possible the suspected condition was not detected as not all heart conditions are ever-present. As a matter of fact, the most common arrhythmias such as atrial fibrillation or tachycardia are infrequent, or triggered by a particular event and as such often asymptomatic so a short test such as electrocardiogram might not detect them at that time. A 24-hour Holter monitor test might be a more effective way to look for an infrequent occurrence of a heart condition, but the longer you can track your ECG the higher chances you have to find it. QardioCore is the only non-invasive ECG monitor that was designed to be worn over long periods of time.
Do your regular blood pressure measurements report frequent irregular heartbeats?
Did you know frequently detected irregular heartbeat can be dangerous? Although almost all of us have experienced heart fluttering or felt our heart skipping a beat, some of these events can be signs of arrhythmias, abnormal or irregular heart patterns. Some are harmless, but some can be extremely dangerous and require treatment. An ECG test can evaluate if your heart is healthy or has developed a problem.
Does heart disease run in your family?
Heart disease often runs in a family and is passed from generation to generation. If your relatives have suffered from high blood pressure, heart attack or stroke, it is possible you might develop a heart problem as well. Even with a healthy lifestyle, you are still at a higher risk if you have a family history of heart disease, and should establish your heart health baseline and continue monitoring your heart performance periodically.
Do you live a stressful, unhealthy lifestyle?
A sedentary lifestyle, obesity, smoking, excessive alcohol consumption and an unhealthy diet all contribute to the increased risk of developing a heart related problem. Individuals with an unhealthy lifestyle are also more likely to develop a heart problem earlier in their lives. Start monitoring your heart health early and reconsider your lifestyle choices to prevent heart problems in the future.
Do you suffer from high blood pressure?
Undetected, untreated and uncontrolled high blood pressure is the leading cause of most heart related problems. It can lead to strokes and heart attacks and increases the risk of developing heart arrhythmias such as atrial fibrillation. Also, patients with detected tachycardia have shown a high risk of developing hypertension in several studies.
It’s never too early to start monitoring your heart. You can begin with simple blood pressure checks, which are easy to do at home with QardioArm, our smart blood pressure monitor. Its companion app keeps your BP history conveniently on your smartphone or tablet and notifies you of any changes in your normal values. But if you want real powerful insights into your heart health, QardioCore is a medically accurate ECG monitor designed for easy frequent use. And because the Qardio App allows you to export snippets of your ECG trace and share vital heart health data with your doctor, you can easily build your heart health baseline and have your doctor check for any changes overtime.