In America, the leading cause of death is heart attacks. 25% of deaths in the country are due to heart attacks, outranking cancer as the number one killer. The three major causes of heart attacks are high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and smoking.
According to the Center For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there are 5 conditions that will add to your risk of heart attack. Those are diabetes, overweight and obesity, poor diet, physical inactivity, and excessive alcohol use.
Approximately half of all heart attacks happen outside of a hospital, and early detection is key in survival. According to a study done by the CDC in 2005, 92% of respondents recognized chest discomfort as a symptom of a heart attack. Only 27% were aware of all major symptoms and knew to call 9-1-1 when someone was having a heart attack.
Symptoms Of A Heart Attack
Here are the symptoms you need to be aware of when it comes to recognizing heart attacks. These could let you know if you are at risk, even a month before it happens.
This is the most common of symptoms and it comes in various different forms. Some people feel a pressure in their chest, while others feel burning or pinching. These feelings can occur during physical activity or while you’re at rest. The best thing to do is to contact a doctor right away if you feel any strange sensations in your chest.
It is important to note that you could be having a heart attack without feeling discomfort in your chest, as is common in women.
A sudden feeling of fatigue for no reason could be a sign that a heart attack is incoming. The heart has to work harder as arteries begin to close, and can make simple tasks feel exhausting. This can result sleeping longer hours at night or feeling like you need to take multiple naps during the day.
Long Lasting Cold Symptoms
Having cold symptoms that won’t seem to go away could be a sign of heart failure. As the heart struggles with supplying the body with blood, blood can leak back into the lungs. Pay attention to white or pink mucus with your cough which could be a byproduct of blood leakage.
As the heart struggles to pump the body with blood, veins can begin to swell causing a bloating effect. The main points of swelling are the feet, ankles, and legs because they are the farthest from the heart. It is also possible to observe peripheral cyanosis, which is a blue tinge seen in the lips or extremities.
As blood circulation is restricted with a weakened heart, the brain may not be receiving the amount of oxygen it needs. You may feel constantly dizzy or light headed, and this is a major point of concern and you should seek medical attention immediately.
Shortness Of Breath
Another major sign of an impending heart attack is shortness of breath. The heart and lungs work in unison, so as the heart begins to work poorly, the lungs don’t get the amount of oxygen that they need. This causes difficulty breathing and needs to be treated immediately.
These symptoms may occur up to a month in advance so it is important to be aware of them at all times. If you feel any or a combination of these symptoms please seek medical attention quickly. Take charge of your health and protect yourself as best as you can.