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Can a broken heart actually break your heart?

By Ada Castro Madrid
On February 24, 2015

Photo by: Sylvana Kelley 

People tend to say “he or she broke my heart” but… do they really mean it? Dr. Cynthia Thalk answered this question for the Huffpost Blog on February 16. 

There is no doubt that being heart-broken is painful in both your mind and body. Sometimes we think that people are exaggerating with their statements about love. Dr. Thalk proves us wrong.

When we experience an intense emotional situation, our blood pressure goes up, we release more hormones than we should and our immune system weakens. 

Usually these levels would normalize, but in some cases it does overwhelm the heart and can cause heart failure.

There even is a Broken Heart Syndrome and the American Heart Association says it is a fact: you can have a broken heart. “Women are more likely than men to experience the sudden, intense chest pain as the reaction to a surge of stress hormones,” the association said on a 2013 article.

There are both good and bad news about the Broken Heart Syndrome. The good news is that most of the people who suffer from it, recover completely. The bad news, on the other hand, is that it does affect the heart muscles temporarily and it can lead to a permanent condition.

Both Dr. Thalk and the American Heart Association state that the syndrome’s symptoms are very similar to those of a heart attack. This explains better why people confuse these terms.

Do not be scared, though… you are not likely to die from a broken heart. We just need to be conscious that our emotional responses do affect our body.It works as a chain: the more feelings we sense, the more work the body has to do to digest them, as if they were food. Being a college student is not easy when you try to balance school, sports, relationships and life, but we can do it!

Relationships might not be our forte, but we still have a chance to make it out of college without a broken heart. If you do get one, just remember that you will not die from having that. Maybe that will make you feel better.

If you want to share how you got over your #BrokenHeart to help other students that are under the same situation, please share your advice on Facebook with the hashtag #BrokenHeartOU. 

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