Mayo Clinic Minute: Heart health and dangers of shoveling snow

Shoveling and digging out after a heavy snowfall is usually a good exercise for most individuals; however for these with heart disease, shoveling is finest left for others to do.

Dr. Sharonne N. Hayes, a Mayo Clinic heart specialist, says she encourages exercising, however the mixture of chilly climate and strenuous exercise places additional pressure in your coronary heart and can set off a heart attack.

Watch: Mayo Clinic Minute

Journalists: Broadcast-quality video (1:08) is within the downloads on the finish of this publish. Please courtesy: “Mayo Clinic News Network.” Read the script.

Shoveling snow is usually a good exercise, however it’s not for everybody.

“Shoveling snow is one of those uniquely dangerous cardiovascular stress tests for a variety of reasons,” says Dr. Hayes.

She tells her coronary heart sufferers, “I really don’t want you to do that anymore. You can mow your lawn; you can go on hikes and walks. I want you to exercise.”

The causes, she says, are each physiological and psychological.

Physiological contains your blood vessels constricting from being out within the chilly, which will increase blood pressure. 

“And that is sufficient, in a susceptible particular person generally, to offer them chest ache. Say they’ve some blockages, it’d give them angina, or chest ache,” Dr. Hayes says.

Add that to the workload of digging heavy snow, and then …

“… the psychologic part. And everyone, all of my patients, smile when I say it because it’s a knowing smile, ‘Oh, yeah,'” says Dr. Hayes.

Sometimes it is exhausting to cease when you start one thing.

“It’s that combination of cold, extreme exertion, and then maybe sticking it out longer than is wise because we’ve got to finish and get to the end of the walk,” Dr. Hayes explains.

It’s finest to verify along with your healthcare group in regards to the advisability of shoveling heavy snow, says Dr. Hayes.

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