Identifying the warning signs of heart attacks can help you get medical help before an actual attack occurs.
Heart attack is also known as myocardial infarction and occurs when the cardiac muscle doesn’t get enough blood. That can lead to permanent damage to the heart cells and can also lead to death.
Although heart attacks can occur due to several reasons, they're usually associated with chronic inflammatory conditions. Sometimes plaque builds up on the walls inside the blood vessels, which clogs the arteries and prevents blood flow.
In this article, we will list some critical signs of heart attack that can help you get medical help on time.
Risk Factors Associated with Heart Attack
Several chronic inflammatory conditions and lifestyle habits can contribute to signs of heart attack and can easily be prevented with lifestyle changes. Common risk factors related to heart disease include:
- genetic predisposition
- high blood pressure
- high bad cholesterol
- poor diet
- excessive alcohol consumption
- lack of physical exercise
If you're suffering from any of these conditions, it's advisable to seek medical help. You can get yourself tested for these risk factors on your health professional's advice.
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Signs of Heart Attack in Women
The signs of heart attack are almost similar in men and women. The symptoms can be mild or severe depending on the type of blockage in the arteries. The critical signs are:
1) Chest pain and discomfort
Chest pain is a common sign of a heart attack. People generally describe this pain as heavy or tight. The discomfort can stay for minutes to hours depending on the severity of the attack. However, chest pain might not occur in all cases of heart attacks.
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2) Pain in other body parts
As per a report published by the American Heart Association, it was found that women often reported pain specifically in the lower abdomen and lower portion of the chest. Pain can also occur in the upper abdomen, shoulder, back, neck, teeth, or jaw. Upper back pain is another symptom found in women.
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3) Excessive sweating
Pumping blood through clogged arteries increases energy expenditure, which increases heat production in the body. That leads to excessive sweating.
Sweating is important to bring the temperature down. Cold sweats, though, are one of the most important signs of heart attack. They're a matter of concern and must be brought under medical supervision.
Women tend to experience frequent occurrences of night sweats. It has to be kept in mind that night sweats are also a symptom of menopause, and many women often tend to confuse between the two. It's advisable for women at risk of heart attacks to regularly get their tests done.
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People at risk of heart attacks often feel tired or exhausted for no reason, which is one of the most ignored symptoms of heart attack.
Fatigue can occur due to several reasons, including fluid imbalance. Fatigue caused by heart attacks is due to the extra stress caused to the heart. Chronic fatigue can be considered one of the early signs of heart attack, which can help prevent critical situations.
Dizziness is one of the classic signs of heart attack. People often ignore lightheadedness and dizziness as a sign of fatigue. For at-risk individuals, it's advised to consult a doctor immediately whenever a person feels dizzy. People with relevant medical history must take extra precautions.
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Signs of Heart Attack in Men
Other than a few symptoms, most signs of heart attack are common in men and women. Men generally do not complain of cold sweats and lower abdominal pain. Chest pain is the most common sign reported in men.
That might be due to several physiological reasons and requires further research. Other signs, including shortness of breath and fatigue, are usually seen in men and women alike.
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The aforementioned signs of heart attack can be easily monitored in individuals at risk. It's advisable to seek immediate medical attention whenever a person complains of any of these symptoms.