If you have had a heart attack or stroke in the past, taking low-dose aspirin daily will help reduce the chances of having another heart attack or stroke in the future. However, most people who do not have heart disease should not take aspirin daily as a precaution to avoid having a heart attack or stroke.
This article will explain the benefits and side effects of aspirin. It will also weigh the benefits and risks for most individuals.
Benefits of aspirin
Aspirin is usually used as an anti-inflammatory medication that reduces fever and relieves pain. However, it is also effective at preventing blood clots from forming. Blood clots are the leading cause of heart attacks and strokes. They form when plaque ruptures and your body tries to control the damage by forming a blood clot. Arteries that have already been narrowed by plaque buildup can become blocked by a clot. This will stop blood flow to your brain or your heart, causing a stroke or a heart attack.
Taking aspirin daily reduces your blood’s ability to clot by targeting platelets, which clump together when they reach damaged blood vessels. However, although the blood-thinning quality of aspirin can reduce your risk of heart attack and stroke, having thinner blood than normal could also increase your risk for other harmful issues.
Side effects of aspirin
Aspirin can cause a number of gastrointestinal side effects, such as irritation of your stomach lining and gastrointestinal ulcers, and bleeding. Since aspirin thins your blood and makes it more difficult to form clots, you should not take it if you are at a high risk of bleeding.
Taking aspirin to prevent heart attack and stroke can be dangerous if you use other blood thinners or have had gastrointestinal ulcers, bleeding, or gastritis; if you are currently suffering from kidney failure or advanced liver disease, or if you have a bleeding or clotting disorder.
Benefits vs. risks
Now that you understand the benefits of taking aspirin, it is important to learn about the risks.
Research has shown that aspirin does not benefit women who do not have heart disease. In fact, rather than reducing the risk of heart attack, it actually increased the risk of bleeding. However, it has been found that aspirin may be beneficial for women over 65.
In a clinical trial that involved adults over the age of 65, some of the participants’ deaths were attributed to aspirin use.