Each year, hundreds of thousands of Americans die from heart attacks, according to the Centers for Disease Control. It’s the leading killer in this country and it is 100 percent preventable. Not only can watching cholesterol help things from escalating, you can do several things each day to help prevent this sudden killer.
Did you know heart attack symptoms can present themselves as much as a week before you have a heart attack? By knowing what you’re looking for, you may be able to save your own life. Here are some of the most common symptoms a heart attack may be coming on:
- Chest pains: This is the top symptom of a heart attack and is usually centered in the center or on the left side. Unfortunately, chest pain can sometimes be confused with gas, so it’s important to pay special attention to the frequency and duration of these pains. With heart attack-related chest pains, the discomfort can feel like a squeezing or tightening or intense pain. In the case of a heart attack, the pain is recurring and changes its normal pattern. To play it safe, if you have chest pain, seek medical attention immediately.
- Upper body pain: Similar to the chest pain, a heart attack victim may experience pain of the jaw, shoulder, arm, or back. Pain can even be present in the mouth.
- Fatigue. A person with an impending heart attack may feel fatigued and have shortness of breath in the days or minutes leading up to the attack. Nausea and vomiting are also sometimes present. In extreme cases, a patient may actually faint or begin sweating, especially at the time of the attack.
While these are common symptoms, it’s important to note that for every person, the experience and symptoms may different. Any symptoms should be checked out by your doctor just to play it safe.