Today, people mistake heart attack for cardiac arrest. The differene between the two is actually very distinct. Cardiac arrest is the medical situation when your heart stopped beating. It does not necessarily mean there is something wrong with your heart. It could be a result of a complication. On the other hand, a heart attack is actually a disorder. Also called acute myocardial infarction, a heart attack is characterized by an interruption of the blood supply to a particular part of the heart resulting to oxygen shortage. The area not receiving sufficient oxygen suffers from tissue damage that could lead to tissue death. This is when a person would be experiencing a heart attack.
Since heart attacks are the leading causes of death worldwide, knowing the signs could mean the difference between life and death. Contrary to some belief, heart attacks do not always have to be a “chest-grabbing” incident. Many people experiencing a heart attack actually thought it was just heart burn or chest muscle pains. And it doesn’t even have to be a one-time discomfort. You can experience recurring symptoms, which may feel mild one day and the next day severe, before an actual heart attack happens. So before you put yourself or your loved ones in serious dangers, here are some heart attack signs to look for.
The most classic heart attack sign is a feeling of discomfort in the middle of the chest. It could be a sudden dull pain that could subside after a few minutes. But remember that this kind of chest discomfort always come back. You may also feel an uncomfortable squeezing, pressure of even fullness aside from the mild to severe pain. This chest discomfort is actually because of the oxygen shortage in the heart muscle. Some pain actually spread to the left arm, lower jaw, back and stomach region.
Another heart attack sign is the sudden shortness of breath. This is because the left part of the heart has limited output, eventually damaging the heart. You will also exhibit other heart attack signs such as sweating, nausea, weakness, vomiting, light headedness and palpitations. Some persons lose consciousness when having a heart attack while others die suddenly.
In females, heart attack signs vary a little. The most common signs include weakness, dyspnea and fatigue. Sleep disturbances are also reported for a period as long as a month before an actual heart attack occurs. Not all persons with heart tissue damage will experience pain or discomfort. In fact, almost 30% of heart attack cases did not exhibit classic chest pain or other heart attack signs. It will only be confirmed after a medical investigation is done,
Individuals at risk of a heart attack are those who have a genetic disposition to it (family history), diabetes, obesity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol levels, high LDL levels and low HDL levels. People, who smoke, drink excessively, eat fatty foods, do not exercise and stressed, are also at risk of having a heart attack. These kinds of habits can be severly damaging to your body, and can ultimately prove to be fatal.