Have you ever experienced some chest pain or shortness of breath? These are probably warning signs already of a heart attack. Most of the time, people who encounter this don’t give the feeling much attention. Instead, they think of it a just another ordinary sign of fatigue and that their heart is healthy.
It is certainly right to stay calm when you feel any discomfort, you should not ignore the fact too, that you might already be experiencing heart attack symptoms. To know the symptoms, it is vital to learn about coronary artery disease first. It is also important to know the risk factors of this heart disease, what to do the first time you feel this and when it is time to go to the emergency room.
Early Signs and Symptoms of Heart Attack to Watch Out and Monitor
Signs and symptoms of a heart attack may vary according to the person experiencing it. Indeed, they differ from one person to another. Meaning, not all attacks start with chest pain as most people have known. In fact, there are times when a person, especially if he has diabetes, does not experience any symptoms at all.
The symptoms may start slowly with a person feeling some mild pains and discomfort. More so, a possible heart attack occurs while the person is either resting or very active. The severity of such an attack depends on the patient’s gender, age and health condition.
Heart disease may also be associated with high blood pressure. Additionally, shortness of breath whether you are feeling some chest discomfort or not is also another sign of heart attack. If this happens, the occurrence of the attack may also affect the other parts of the body including:
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, women are more likely to experience symptoms than men. The same agency has it that there are five main symptoms of a heart attack. These include:
- Back, jaw or neck pain or discomfort
- Discomfort or pain in the chest
- Feeling light-headed, weak and about to faint
- Shoulder or arms pain
- And shortness of bread, to name a few
Heart Attack in Women
For the past decade, there has been an increasing awareness about heart disease also called myocardial infarction. However, only a little more than 50% of women acknowledge the fact that a heart attack can be their No.1 killer. This life-threatening heart illness is the main reason for the death of nearly 300,000 women in the United States in 2017. In addition, among the Alaska Native and American Indian women, cancer and heart disease cause approximately the same number of fatalities each year.
As mentioned, the signs and symptoms vary. In fact, there may be instances when the indications are not felt or experienced at all. However, there is a big chance for women to feel these common symptoms of heart failure or attack:
Heart Attack Risk Factors
There are several factors considered that a heart attack may possibly happen. These may include:
- Age – the heart ailment risk rises as a person gets older. Man ages 45 and above, and women aged 55 and up are most likely to have heart attack risk.
- Gender – As earlier mentioned, women have a greater risk of acquiring heart disease than men.
- Ethnicity – Some groups have a greater risk than the other raise. For instance, African Americans are more possibly to experience a heart attack than whites with a heart ailment.
- Family background or history – You are most likely to experience or suffer from a heart attack if there is a member in your family who had a heart ailment at a very young age.
Things to Do Upon Seeing and Feeling Signs of Heart Attack
When early signs of a heart attack occur, you don’t receive the help you need right away even if you call 911 or an emergency number near your place. There are things you can do to reduce your risk of experiencing the said attack.
- Chew or swallow a piece of aspirin. Do not do so, if you are allergic to the medicine or you’ve been instructed by your doctor not to take aspirin.
- Take the nitroglycerin but only do so, if you have been prescribed by your doctor the medicine before.
- If the patient is unconscious, begin cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). It is essential to know that if you have not undergone any CPR training, doctors recommend that you do only chest compression of up to 120 compressions per minute.
- If there is an AED or an automated defibrillator available right away and the patient is unconscious, follow the instructions for use to operate the device.
Lowering the Chances of Getting Heart Disease
Anybody can acquire heart ailment but there are ways to lower the chance of having the disease. First, is by knowing and constantly monitoring your blood pressure. If you don’t control your blood pressure, there is a tendency for you to have heart disease. This health condition does not have symptoms so it is vital to have it checked regularly.
The second thing to do to lower the chance of getting heart disease is by talking to a doctor or health care team and discuss the possibility of undergoing tests for diabetes. The third must-do is to quit smoking. If you cannot control diabetes, this sickness can raise the risk of heart disease.
Third, is to quit smoking. If you’re not smoking, don’t attempt to start and if you’re smoking, discover the many ways of quitting. Then, for the fourth must-do, consider healthy food choices as an external icon. Being obese or overweight also means you have a high risk of acquiring a heart attack.
Other Preventive Measures to Avoid Heart Attack
The things to do to lower heart attack risks were only a few of how you can maintain a healthy heart. It will also help if you control your triglyceride and cholesterol levels. Remember, high cholesterol levels can block your arteries and increase your heart disease raise, as well as a heart attack. Medicines and lifestyle change, if there is a need, help in lowering the cholesterol levels so they can help prevent heart attack, too.
Retain a healthy weight. Being obese or overweight can increase heart ailment risk. The next preventive measure is a healthy diet. If you limit your intake of saturated fat, sodium-rich foods and added sugar, you are less likely to gain weight and the risk of having a heart attack is lowered, as well.
Lastly, exercise regularly as this has a lot of benefits including heart-strengthening and the improvement of blood circulation. Regular exercise contributes to a healthy and retained weight. It also helps lower cholesterol levels and blood pressure. Therefore, it is less likely for an individual to have a high risk of heart ailment if he is living a healthy lifestyle.