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Snow Shoveling and Your Health

Some people are unaware of the risks involved with snow shoveling and are unaware that there are companies that provide snow shoveling as part of their business package of snow removal.

Hiring a professional snow removal company to do all your hard work for you could save your life or save one from a severe injury and here is why:

Several investigations have been done as of late that demonstrate a solid correlation between increased hazard for heart attack and shoveling snow. For sources on this, essentially search the web, where a lot of studies are sketched out on trustworthy sites, for example. Other than heart attacks, many different wounds are correlated, for example, strokes, broken bones, harmed neck and back, pulled muscles and even strained ligaments.

What's the science behind these investigations? I mean really, how could snow shoveling lead to heart attacks? Indeed, it is usually done in severe temperatures, and for the individuals who are not presented to strenuous exercises on a regular basis, shoveling can be a real stun to the heart, much the same as any other exercise that you are unaccustomed to. Experiencing a strenuous exercise with the addition of icy temperatures is what leads to increased strokes and heart attacks.

According to the seventeen-year study, appearing in the January 2011 issue of the American Journal of Emergency Medicine, the most common injury diagnoses were soft tissue injuries (55 percent), lacerations (16 percent) and fractures (7 percent). The lower back was the most frequently injured region of the body (34 percent), followed by injuries to the arms and hands (16 percent), and head (15 percent). Acute musculoskeletal exertion (54 percent), slips or falls (20 percent) and being struck by a snow shovel (15 percent) were the most frequent mechanisms of snow shovel-related injuries.

While cardiac-related injuries accounted for only 7 percent of the total number of cases, they were the most serious, accounting for more than half of the hospitalizations and 100 percent of the 1,647 fatalities associated with shoveling snow. Patients 55 years of age and older were 4.25 times more likely than younger patients to experience cardiac-related symptoms while shoveling snow. Among patients 55 years of age or older, men were twice as likely as women to exhibit cardiac-related symptoms.

"The cardiovascular demands of snow shoveling are increased by the freezing temperatures that typically accompany snowfall. Not only is the heart's workload increased due to shoveling snow, but cold temperatures also add to the chances of a heart attack in at-risk individuals. We recommend talking to your doctor before you shovel snow, especially if you do not exercise regularly, have a medical condition or are in a high-risk group.

Experts also recommend that people consider alternatives to shoveling snow such as hiring someone else to do it.

Snow shoveling is a known trigger for heart attacks. Emergency rooms in the snow belt gear up for extra cases when enough of the white stuff has fallen to force folks out of their homes armed with shovels or snow blowers.

What’s the connection? Many people who shovel snow rarely exercise. Picking up a shovel and moving hundreds of pounds of snow, particularly after doing nothing physical for several months, can put a big strain on the heart. Pushing a heavy snow blower can do the same thing. Cold weather is another contributor because it can boost blood pressure, interrupt blood flow to part of the heart, and make blood more likely to form clots.

When a clot forms inside a coronary artery (a vessel that nourishes the heart), it can completely block blood flow to part of the heart. Cut off from their supply of life-sustaining oxygen and nutrients, heart muscle cells begin to shut down, and then die. This is what doctors call a myocardial infarction or acute coronary syndrome. The rest of us call it a heart attack.

The so-called classic signs of a heart attack are a squeezing pain in the chest, shortness of breath, pain that radiates up to the left shoulder and down the left arm, or a cold sweat. Other signs that are equally common include jaw pain, lower back pain, unexplained fatigue or nausea, and anxiety.