Which diseases or disorders affect the heart?
Doctors, scientists, and even patients have recognized: emotional stress contributes to the development of cardiovascular diseases. However, as it turned out, stress can be different. That means it can lead to an infarction in different ways.
The first way is when you experience chronic emotional stress. Constant nervous tension is a predisposition to the development of atherosclerosis, which sooner or later can lead to coronary heart disease (CHD), stroke and peripheral arterial disease.
The second case is when a person experiences a strong nervous shock, intense stress, for example, as a result of some sad or tragic event. Such stress develops rapidly, which usually result in the rapid acute myocardial infarction.
The problem of “stress-heart” is complicated by the fact that graduated stress is the norm of our life and even necessary for the human body: short-term and not strong, it mobilizes the body (for example, in case of deadline at work) and when successfully resolved, despite the fatigue, it leaves a pleasant feeling of satisfaction. This light stress does not cause exhaustion, so in the medical environment it is also called productive.
However often we, unfortunately, have to deal with stresses that are harmful, which cause heart problems. Here are just a few examples of how they destroy our body and lead to a myocardial infarction.
It is proven that stress can accelerate the development of atherosclerosis. People who often react violently to life situations, experience a surge of adrenaline (usually it is manifested as disappointment, anger or hostility). According to scientists these people are in greatest danger.
In addition, chronic emotional stress is often accompanied by worsening of other factors which indirectly increase the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
A vivid example is smoking. Smokers under stress usually increase their tobacco consumption. A lot of people under emotional stress start overeating. Consequently, they increase the body weight and cholesterol level in the blood. Thus, chronic stress can affect the blood vessels and contribute to worsening of the general condition of the heart. The way we react to stress affects directly the cardiovascular system.
Even “joyful stress,” that is, a happy moments, sometimes cause a myocardial infarction. For example, a New Year's party, the birth of a grandson, a successful interview and even a visit to the opera with the family.
Of course, death of a loved one, divorce, loss of work, failure in business, the impact of natural (or technological) disasters or serious family conflicts – all these associated with an increased risk of a sudden myocardial infarction.