February is American Heart Month and a great time to raise awareness on the warning signs of a heart attack.
Every 42 seconds, someone in the United States suffers a heart attack, and women account for nearly half of all heart attack deaths.
Heart attack symptoms are different for everyone, but can sometimes be mistaken for heartburn or discomfort.
Here are 3 heart attack signs you should know:
1. Nausea or dizziness
You may experience nausea, shortness of breath, lightheadedness or sudden dizziness. You may feel as if you can’t catch your breath and experience rapid breathing. A feeling of weakness is also a common symptom.
2. Chest pressure, tightness and heaviness
Most heart attacks involve discomfort in the center of the chest that lasts more than a few minutes. It may go away and then return, but it will feel uncomfortable like pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain.
According to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, there’s evidence that about one-third of people with heart attacks experience no chest pain.
People with diabetes and older adults are more likely to experience a heart attack without chest pain.
3. Pain in shoulders, neck, jaw or arms
Symptoms can include pain or discomfort in one or both arms as well as the neck, jaw, back or stomach. Upper body pain can occur between your shoulders or above your belly button in the stomach area.
Some people may have warning signs and symptoms hours, days or weeks in advance while others strike suddenly. The earliest warning signs may be reoccurring chest pain or pressure triggered by exertion and relieved by rest.
Age, smoking, high blood pressure, obesity and a family history of heart attack are all risk factors.
Maintain a healthy weight, don’t smoke, exercise regularly and manage stress and control conditions that lead to a heart attack to practice good lifestyle factors and prevent a heart attack.
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