While it may not share the same high-profile stage as some of the other twelve stops on the annual calendar, including Easter and Christmas, September is Vascular Disease Awareness Month.
Vascular disease is responsible for a quarter of the annual deaths in the UK, killing almost 160,000 people a year. Every day, 460 people, one every three minutes, lose their fight with vascular disease, and there are currently 7.6 million people in the UK living with a heart or circulatory disease. That’s a ticking time bomb that can and will affect almost all of us in our lifetimes, just waiting to go off.
With that in mind, Protect Line devised a three-step awareness plan to help anyone struggling with or worried about vascular disease built around a simple trio of rules – security, awareness and prevention.
Security – Critical illness cover
When facing the daunting challenges of vascular diseases, having the right financial support is essential. Critical illness cover is that beacon of hope, offering financial security, peace of mind, versatility, and premium protection.
Critical illness cover provides a financial safety net, offering a lump-sum payout upon diagnosing a covered vascular condition. This sum can be used to cover medical expenses, ongoing treatments, or even adjustments to your lifestyle.
Knowing you have financial support in place allows you to focus on your recovery, reducing stress during an already challenging time, and the payout from critical illness cover is not restricted, meaning you can use it for a variety of needs, from medical bills to mortgage payments, giving you the flexibility you need. Investing in this type of cover ensures your loved ones won’t be burdened with your medical expenses, providing them with the security they deserve.
Awareness – Recognising the signs of vascular disease
Early detection can be a game-changer when dealing with vascular diseases. Keep an eye out for these warning signs.
- Pain or discomfort while walking, which subsides with rest but returns when active, can indicate peripheral artery disease and unexplained swelling in the legs or ankles might indicate vein problems.
- Severe chest pain could also be a symptom of an aortic aneurysm, a life-threatening condition. At the same time, sudden vision loss or blurriness may be caused by blood vessel blockages in the eyes, and any sudden loss of feeling or weakness in the face, arms, or legs may be a sign of a stroke, which can result from vascular issues.
Prevention – Reducing the risk of vascular disease
While critical illness cover offers crucial support, prevention is always the best strategy, and there are several ways that you can reduce the risks posed by vascular disease to a minimum.
Maintain a balanced diet and exercise regularly to check your weight, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels. As smoking is a major contributor to almost every vascular disease, it’s a habit you must stop if you want to remain healthy.
If you have diabetes, ensure it’s well-managed, as uncontrolled diabetes can lead to vascular complications. Schedule routine check-ups and MOTs with your GP to ensure everything is in tip-top working order.
Knowing your family’s medical history can also help, as it will help your GP detect any potential issues or problems early and hopefully head them off before they can cause any long-term damage.
David Brewer, the co-founder and CEO of Protect Line, said: “September serves as a timely reminder that none of us is immune to vascular disease, and hopefully Protect Line’s three-step plan can help to reduce the risk that it presents to everyone”