(HealthyResearch.com) – Every 40 seconds, another person experiences a heart attack in the United States, but prompt medical attention helps decrease cardiovascular damage. Unfortunately, the average heart attack victim postpones treatment for 3 hours. Sometimes this delay occurs because a patient doesn’t experience traditional heart attack symptoms, such as chest pain, pressure or tightness. That’s why it’s important to memorize these 4 surprising signs of a heart attack so you can protect yourself and your loved ones if symptoms strike.
The symptoms of heartburn and a heart attack often mimic each other. Each year, approximately 4 million people experiencing a heartburn flare-up seek emergency care for what they mistakenly assume is a heart attack. However, a sensation that mimics heartburn is one of the lesser-known — yet still common — symptoms of a heart attack, especially in women.
Identifying whether your heartburn stems from acid reflux can get tricky, but you’re at a higher risk for a heart attack if the pain starts after physical activity. When in doubt, head straight to the ER for care.
2. Breathing Problems
Before you blame breathing problems on an intense workout or your frequent Netflix viewing, keep in mind that physical activity — or a lack of it — isn’t always the culprit. Breathing difficulties are linked with some types of high blood pressure, which commonly impacts heart health and can even trigger a heart attack if left untreated. Talk to your doctor if you frequently find yourself gasping for air after simple activities, such as checking the mail or putting away groceries.
It’s easy to chalk up exhaustion to a hectic workload or busy social life, but this common complaint can also signal a heart attack. In fact, more than 7 out of 10 women experience fatigue just before a heart attack strikes. Sleep disturbances are also linked with heart disease, so let your doctor know if you’ve been battling bouts of insomnia or feeling unusually sluggish throughout the day.
Like a heart attack, anxiety can cause nausea, dizziness and shortness of breath. You may even feel a tightness or tingling in your chest during an anxiety attack, and anxiety can even cause physical damage to your heart. Because of this, distinguishing between an anxiety attack and a heart attack can get tricky, even for doctors. It’s best to play it safe and head to the hospital for an EKG if your regular self-soothing techniques, such as breathing slowly or taking a fast-acting mood stabilizer, fail to relieve your symptoms of an anxiety attack.
When a heart attack strikes, you may only experience one of these symptoms; don’t assume you’re off the hook if others don’t appear. Seek immediate medical care if you suspect you are experiencing a heart attack, as timely treatment — preferably within 90 minutes after an episode strikes — can save your life.
~Here’s to Your Health & Safety!
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