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Aspirin Use: Risks Versus Benefits

Aspirin is commonly used to relieve pain caused by headaches, muscle aches, toothaches and other ailments or conditions. It can even help reduce fevers as well as pain and swelling. For a while, medical experts recommended those at-risk for cardiovascular disease take low-dose (80mg) aspirin daily prevent heart attacks and strokes. However, there may be a major health risk in doing so.

Taking Too Much Aspirin is Risky

The idea that aspirin can help prevent strokes and heart attacks has been accepted as fact. But last year, three clinical trials revealed taking aspirin every day could result in some serious health problems, including bleeding risks. As a result of these findings, the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology changed their clinical practice guidelines by recommending that individuals over the age of 70 or those that have an increased bleeding risk avoid taking aspirin on a daily basis.

In one of the studies, researchers discovered many Americans over the age of 40 were taking aspirin every day to prevent cardiovascular disease, and the majority of them did it without the knowledge or advice of their doctors. Researchers found almost 25% of these Americans (roughly 29 million people) were taking daily aspirin despite the fact they didn’t have cardiovascular disease. Additionally, roughly 50 percent of adults over the age of 70 without a history of heart disease or stroke were also taking aspirin every day.

Ask Your Doctor When Aspirin Should be Taken

There’s usually no harm in taking aspirin sporadically as a mild pain reliever, which is its intended use. If you’re considering taking aspirin daily to prevent heart attacks or strokes, you should speak with your doctor first. If you’re not at risk for cardiovascular disease or if you have an increased bleeding risk, don’t take aspirin daily without your physician’s recommendation. To remain up-to-date with the latest health research and studies, keep visiting us at The Benefits Store.


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