It’s not uncommon to feel a little bit of chest pain or discomfort from time to time, but if you’re reading this article, you probably think you have reason to believe that you’re having a heart attack right now. If this is the case, it’s important to take action and seek help as soon as possible, because every minute counts when it comes to preventing heart attacks and saving lives! Here are 10 deadly signs that you might be having a heart attack, and what steps you should take next. 1) Chest Pain Many people experience chest pain before they have heart attacks.
1) Shortness of breath
The most common symptom of a heart attack is shortness of breath. If you’re feeling like you can’t get enough air, even during an everyday activity, it could be a sign that your heart isn’t pumping blood as effectively as it should be. If you or someone you know is experiencing shortness of breath, visit an emergency room immediately—within an hour or two is ideal. The sooner doctors begin treatment after symptoms appear, they better able they are to save your life.
Severe nausea or stomach pain could be signs of heart attack. These symptoms often come with sweating, vomiting, and palpitations. This can also happen if you’re eating extremely spicy food or have eaten too much fatty food. Uncomfortable pressure in your chest: A constant squeezing sensation that doesn’t go away when you take deep breaths might be a sign of heart attack. This symptom may feel like an elephant sitting on your chest and won’t go away even when you lie down flat.
3) Abdominal pain
Abdominal pain is one of most common heart attack symptoms. The pain, which can come on suddenly and last for several minutes, often feels like someone’s squeezing your stomach and can range from dull to severe. It may not be accompanied by other classic heart attack symptoms such as chest pain, sweating or shortness of breath. As a result, people who have abdominal pain but not chest pain might think they aren’t having a heart attack – but that isn’t necessarily true.
4) Sudden headache
One of the more common signs of heart attack is sudden onset of severe, crushing pain or pressure in your head, neck, jaw or shoulders. This type of headache may feel like an ice pick behind your eye, throbbing temple pain, or a dull ache between your shoulder blades. It can radiate down into your arms and chest and make you feel nauseous.
Fatigue is one of those signs that most people just blow off—or chalk up to something else. But feeling constantly tired or lethargic could be a sign of heart disease, so don’t brush it off. If you feel fatigued but otherwise healthy, see your doctor—you may have sleep apnea or some other condition that’s disrupting your sleep cycle.
6) Severe shoulder, arm, chest or back pain
There are two types of heart attacks: ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) and non-ST-elevation myocardial infarction (NSTEMI). If you have severe chest, shoulder or back pain, it’s most likely that you’re having a STEMI. With these signs, call 911 right away and don’t drive yourself to get help because symptoms can worsen quickly.
7) Palpitations (feeling your heart beat when it shouldn’t be beating)
Palpitations can be an indication of a number of serious heart conditions, including arrhythmias and various types of heart attacks. Arrhythmias are irregular or abnormal heart rhythms that disrupt blood flow in your body. Palpitations may feel like your heart is fluttering, skipping beats, or beating too quickly. If you notice palpitations, it’s important to see your doctor for evaluation.
8) Cold sweat
Do you feel clammy and cold all over? That may be one of your body’s first warning signs that something isn’t right. The good news is, it could also be a sign that you’re about to get into bed for an amazing night of sleep. So relax, enjoy your comforter, and let your body do its thing. Go to bed!
9) Anxiety/panic attack
As many as one in five heart attack patients experience an attack of extreme anxiety or feelings of impending doom beforehand. These feelings are not psychosomatic; rather, they’re usually accompanied by an actual change in heart rate and other physical symptoms. The greater your risk for heart disease, and more severe it is, the greater your risk for anxiety/panic attacks before having a heart attack.
10) Extreme weakness/dizziness/lightheadedness
A heart attack can cause these symptoms because your body is not getting enough oxygen. The risk of death from heart disease increases if you ignore these symptoms and do nothing about them. Report them to a doctor or call 911 immediately, but don’t delay.