Signs You Need A Stress Test And How To Prepare

Posted on: 12 October 2021

A stress test is designed to show how your heart responds during exercise. During this test, your doctor will have you walk on a treadmill as you are hooked up to equipment that monitors your heart rhythm and breathing. The actual exercise portion takes about 15 minutes to complete. A stress test is considered very safe and is typically performed in a doctor's office. Here are a few signs that you may need a stress test soon.

You Just Had a Heart Attack

Suffering a heart attack can definitely be a scary event. You may likely have to make several changes to your lifestyle after the fact, such as eating a healthier diet and exercising more frequently. Your doctor may also advise you to undergo a stress test soon to detect the strength of your heart muscles. The stress test may also help determine if you have coronary heart disease.

You Have Reduced Blood Flow

Reduced blood flow can cause shortness of breath, chest pain, and muscles cramps and may result from a variety of conditions, such as blood clots, diabetes, or artery disease. If your doctor believes that you have reduced blood flow, then they may order a stress test to find out what is going on.

You Are at Risk for Heart Disease

Some people have a higher risk of getting heart disease than others. There are several factors that can increase the likelihood of developing heart disease, such as smoking, obesity, and a family history of the condition. If you are at risk of heart disease, then it may be beneficial to undergo a stress test.

How To Prepare for a Stress Test

A stress test is straightforward and routine. However, it is still important to prepare properly for it to have the best possible experience. Here are a few ways to get ready for the stress test.

  • Do not eat or drink anything for a few hours before the test to prevent nausea.
  • Wear loose exercise clothes to ensure your comfort during the test.
  • Discontinue taking medications that may hinder your heart's response to physical activity.
  • Do not smoke before your test.

If your doctor has recommended for you to get a stress test, then you need to schedule one as soon as possible. The test does not take too long to complete and is able to reveal important information about the health of your heart.