american heart month
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It’s American Heart Month!

Since 1964 February has been deemed American Heart Month and it’s not just because of Valentine’s Day. According to the Centers For Disease Control, cardiovascular disease and injury is the leading cause of death in the United States, killing more than 600,000 people each year. While it’s easy to assume that heart disease only impacts the elderly, the sad reality is that there has been a surge of cases in younger Americans in the past few years and often the cause is linked to their job.

So What Is American Heart Month All About?

The American Heart Association hopes that American Heart Month will bring additional awareness about the common causes of damage to to the heart and how to reduce one’s risk. According to the association, the following place anyone at risk for developing a cardiovascular issue:american heart month

  1. Obesity
  2. Unhealthy Eating Patterns
  3. High Blood Pressure
  4. Smoking

Although it’s true that an individual is responsible for eating right, practicing healthy living patterns,  and exercising when possible, there are times when they are placed in situations where extreme emotional, mental, or physical stress could result in high blood pressure and many report that this is what happens on a daily basis due to their job.

Stress Management Is Important

Stress is a normal part of life and can ever occur during happy events – it’s the body’s natural response to any sort of change. Physically, stress causes the body to release adrenaline which in turn results in increased heart rate, faster breathing, and an increase in blood pressure. While this may be fine for a little while, when stress is constant, the heart can sustain permanent damage.

Working in a high stress environment can literally cause a heart attack which is why stress management is so important and should be addressed by both employers and employees.

Can Stress Really Cause A Heart Attack?

Yes, yes it can. A heart attack cause by stress is known as takotsubo cardiomyopathy or stress cardiomyopathy. Although in the past doctors thought that a blocked artery was always the cause of a heart attack, it turns out that this isn’t the case.

Stress cardiomyopathy isn’t just caused by emotional or mental stress – if the body experiences physical strain or a physical shock due to an injury or illness, this too can trigger a heart attack. Regardless of what kind of stress caused the attack, the result can be the same – damage to the heart muscles or even death.

My Heart Attack Was Caused By My Job – Will Workers’ Comp Cover Me?

heart under stressYes, if it can be proved that a heart attack or other heart injury was caused by an employees job, workers’ compensation will cover the medical expenses. However, proving that a heart attack was caused by on the job mental or physical stress is one of the most difficult things to do and without an experienced attorney who has handled similar cases in the past, most claims are denied.

The Disability Guys know that workers who have suffered from stress cardiomyopathy are already under enough stress which is why our legal team does everything that they can to make the workers’ comp process go as smoothly as possible.

What Records Can Help Prove My Cases?

When filing a workers’ comp claim, not only will you need your medical records but it’s also helpful to retain any information from during your employment. This might include:

  1. Emails
  2. Schedules
  3. Coworker Contact Information
  4. Photographs

In addition to this, our firm will seek out expert medical opinions, interview witnesses, and issue subpoenas for any information that isn’t easily obtained. You can be sure that we will leave no stone unturned and that we will do everything we can to help you get the coverage you need.

Can I Apply For Social Security Disability?

If your heart condition prevents you from returning to work you may be able to apply for Social Security Disability. Sadly, despite needed the benefits from this program, millions of qualified American’s receive denials each year and have to wait for their chance to fight for approval. By letting our attorneys review the case first and handle the necessary paperwork, you have a much higher chance of being approved with the initial application.

Ask The Disability Guys

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Danielle Dexter, Workers Comp Client from Westchester County
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