Aspirin is a common and familiar drug that has been used for centuries as a pain reliever. You’ve probably used it several times to relieve headaches, body aches, and even fever. However, did you know that it can be used to lower the risk of a heart attack? Yes, that’s right. If you are at a high danger of getting a heart attack, or you’ve already had a heart attack or stroke, your doctor may recommend daily aspirin for you after carefully weighing the benefits and risks. However, before considering aspirin therapy for your heart, here are crucial facts about aspirin that you need to know.
But first, let us look at how aspirin therapy works to prevent a heart attack.
How aspirin therapy works
Aspirin works by interfering with the clotting action of the blood.
Whenever you bleed, platelets, which are the blood’s clotting cells, build up at the area where you wounded. These platelets form a plug, which closes the opening in your blood vessels in order to stop the bleeding.
However, clotting can also take inside the blood vessels that supply the heart with blood. People with narrow blood vessels can experience bursting of the fatty deposits in their arteries. When this happens, a blood clot can form quickly, blocking the artery. This prevents proper flow of blood to the heart, causing a heart attack. Taking aspirin helps to reduce the clumping of platelets, thereby minimizing the risk of getting a heart attack.
Facts about aspirin therapy you should know before use
Aspirin therapy is not for everyone
Every prescription and over the counter drug has benefits and risks, and aspirin is not an exception. Several medical professionals recommend aspirin for their patients because it has proven to help lower the risk of clot-related strokes and heart attacks.
However, you should not start taking aspirin regularly without getting a thorough and accurate assessment of your heart attack risks by a professional doctor. That is because daily use of aspirin therapy can lead to serious side effects including bleeding in the brain, stomach and even lead to kidney failure and strokes.
Stick to the doctor’s directions
If your doctor decides that aspirin is right for you, you have to ensure that you use it according to his or her directions. By following the instructions, you will minimize the side effects you’ll experience and increase your chances of having the greatest benefits.
Aspirin therapy alone is not a magic bullet
Yes, aspirin therapy can help prevent heart attacks; however, other preventative measures like maintaining a healthy lifestyle should also go hand in hand. So, make an effort to take care of yourself by exercising regularly, eating healthy meals, stopping smoking and excessive drinking, and maintaining a healthy weight.
Hopefully, you’re more informed after reading these important facts about aspirin therapy for your heart. If there is one thing you have to remember, it’s to get an accurate assessment of your heart disease risk first from you doctor before using aspirin therapy.