February is American Heart Month.

Heart disease is one of the leading causes of death within our country. Cardiovascular disease, listed as the underlying cause of death, accounts for nearly 801,000 deaths in the US. That’s about 1 of every 3 deaths in the United States. Understanding and identifying common risk factors and symptoms, as well as implementing preventative measures, such as diet, exercise, and regular screenings are all very important in keeping a heart healthy.

Below we have compiled a Heart Health media kit for agents to use in various forms of media, presentations, and in print. Feel free to utilize any of these items in your education and marketing presentations, source information is provided with each element.




Educational Stats

  • Cardiovascular disease, listed as the underlying cause of death, accounts for nearly 801,000 deaths in the US.
  • Approximately every 40 seconds, an American will have a heart attack.
  • Cardiovascular diseases claim more lives each year than all forms of cancer and Chronic Lower Respiratory Disease combined.
  •  Heart attacks ($11.5 billion) and Coronary Heart Disease ($10.4 billion) were 2 of the 10 most expensive hospital principal discharge diagnoses.
  • When considered separately from other cardiovascular diseases, stroke ranks No. 5 among all cause of death in the US, killing nearly 133,000 people a year.
  • Coronary Heart Disease is the leading cause (45.1 percent) of deaths attributable to cardiovascular disease in the US, followed by stroke (16.5 percent), Heart Failure (8.5
    percent), High Blood Pressure (9.1 percent), diseases of the arteries (3.2 percent), and other cardiovascular diseases
  • Heart disease accounts for 1 in 7 deaths in the U.S.
  • Cardiovascular disease is the leading global cause of death, accounting for more than 17.3 million deaths per year in 2013, a number that is expected to grow to more than 23.6 million by


Social Media

Feel free to download and use these images on your social media or website pages. [Right click the image, and click Save Image As, select where on your computer you want to save the image, and finally click Save.]

For pre-made social media posts regarding heart health, the importance of prevention, heart healthy recipes, exercises, and more, please checkout our SMS Agent Connect page on Facebook.


Blog Posts & Website Snippets

1. | Symptoms of a Stroke
Use the acronym for FAST to remember and recognize the following signs and symptoms of stroke:

F: Face drooping. Ask the person to smile, and see if one side is drooping. One side of the face may also be numb, and the smile may appear uneven.

A: Arm weakness. Ask the person to raise both arms. Is there weakness or numbness on one side? One arm drifting downward is a sign of one-sided arm weakness.

S: Speech difficulty. People having a stroke may slur their speech or have trouble speaking at all. Speech may be incomprehensible. Ask the person to repeat a simple sentence and look for any speech abnormality.

T: Time to call 9-1-1. If a person shows any of the symptoms above, even if the symptoms went away, call 9-1-1 and get the person to a hospital immediately.



2. | Symptoms of Heart Attack
The classic symptoms of heart attack include a feeling of extreme pressure on the chest and chest pain, including a squeezing or full sensation. This can be accompanied by pain in one or both arms, jaw, back, stomach, or neck. Other symptoms of heart attack include shortness of breath, nausea, vomiting, lightheadedness, and a feeling of breaking out in a cold sweat.



3. | You Have the Control – Risk Factors for Heart Disease
There are different factors that could put you at a higher risk of Heart Disease. While some factors may be out of your control, but there are several factors are in your control.

High Blood Pressure

High blood pressure (also known as Hypertension) can be a cause of heart disease due to the stress that your heart is under. High blood pressure left untreated cab scar and damage your arteries leading to heart attack, stroke, kidney failure, eye damage, and heart failure.

You must understand your blood pressure and how it can affect your heart. Blood pressure is typically recorded as two numbers and a written as a ratio.

  • Systolic: The top number in the ratio, which is also the higher of the two, measures the pressure in the arteries when the heart beats.
  • Diastolic: The bottom number in the ratio, which is also the lower of the two, measures the pressure in the arteries between heartbeats.



Individuals who smoke on a regular basis are twice as likely to have a heart attack than someone who has never smoked cigarettes.
The damage that can be done to your heart from smoking includes:

  • Smoking damages the lining of your arteries, leading to a build up of fatty material (atheroma) which narrows the artery. This can cause angina, a heart attack or a stroke.
  • The carbon monoxide in tobacco smoke reduces the amount of oxygen in your blood. This means your heart has to pump harder to supply the body with the oxygen it needs.
  • The nicotine in cigarettes stimulates your body to produce adrenaline, which makes your heart beat faster and raises your blood pressure, making your heart work harder.
  • Your blood is more likely to clot, which increases your risk of having a heart attack or stroke. Take a look at our cardiovascular disease page to find out more about blood clots and the damage they can do to your body.


High Cholesterol

When there is too much cholesterol in your blood, it builds up in the walls of your arteries, causing a process called atherosclerosis, a form of heart disease. The arteries become narrowed and blood flow to the heart muscle is slowed down or blocked. The blood carries oxygen to the heart, and if not enough blood and oxygen reach your heart, you may suffer chest pain. If the blood supply to a portion of the heart is completely cut off by a blockage, the result is a heart attack.


Obesity or overweight

Obesity has become a common problem within our country. Current research suggests that one in three Americans are obese. Being overweight can directly lead to high blood pressure and can be contributing a factor to heart disease.


Type 2 Diabetes

Heart disease is common in people with diabetes. Data from the National Heart Association from 2012 shows 65% of people with diabetes will die from some sort of heart disease or stroke. In general, the risk of heart disease death and stroke are twice as high in people with diabetes.
While all people with diabetes have an increased chance of developing heart disease, the condition is more common in those with type 2 diabetes. In fact, heart disease is the number one cause of death among people with type 2 diabetes



Additional Websites and Resources


For Agents

Want more information on the Heart Attack, Stroke, and Critical Illness plans we recommend to have in your portfolio? Or on what Senior Marketing Specialists can do for you and your business? Call 1-800-689-2800 to request more information!



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