Heart Attack: Symptoms And Early Warning Signs

Knowing the warning signs and symptoms of a heart attack is vital for prompt medical treatment. Oftentimes, heart attacks start slowly, unlike what we’re used to seeing in movies. We may not even know that the symptom that we are experiencing can actually be indicative of a heart attack. Symptoms of a heart attack manifest differently in different people, and sometimes a person who’s had a heart attack before, may also show very different symptoms in subsequent attacks.Let’s take a look at some known and little-known symptoms of a heart attack.

1. Chest Pain And Tightness In The Chest

Chest pain is one of the most commonly known symptoms of a heart attack, although sometimes one may show a complete absence of chest pain, even when having a heart attack. This chest pain may feel like pressure, fullness or a tightness in the chest area and usually seems to originate in the center of the chest. The pain may last for a few minutes or go away and return. It can even radiate to the arms, head and neck regions.

2. Toothache And Jaw Pain

Although the pain from a heart attack usually radiates down the arms and the back, some people experience a tooth pain or jaw pain as a symptom of a heart attack. It is entirely possible to have only a tooth ache or jaw pain without having chest pain during a heart attack.

3. Feeling Out Of Breath

Shortness of breath or gasping for air is yet another commonly reported symptom of a heart attack. Shortness of breath may or may not be accompanied by chest pain or other symptoms of a heart attack.

4. Nausea

Nausea is a less common but possible symptom of a heart attack. It can be accompanied by belching and a feeling of indigestion. Women are more likely to have this less typical symptom of a heart attack.

5. Vomiting

The nausea that develops as a symptom of a heart attack can be severe enough to cause vomiting.

6. Gastric Discomfort

Sometimes a heart attack can manifest as pain in the upper abdomen. The pain seems to be more like discomfort or heaviness rather than a sharp pain and it may stay for more than a few minutes. This may or may not be accompanied by pain in the chest area.

7. Unusual Sweating

Unusual or sudden sweating or perspiration can accompany a heart attack. Some people even break out in a cold sweat during a heart attack.

8. Heartburn

Sometimes, a heart attack can manifest as heartburn and discomfort in the upper middle abdomen area. It may or may not be accompanied by pain in the chest region.

9. Pain In The Arm

The chest pain from a heart attack often radiates down one or both arms and shoulders. This pain sometimes radiates all the way to the wrist and fingers. It’s more commonly seen to occur on the left side of the body, but may sometimes occur on the right side.

10. Upper Back Pain

Having pain in the upper back area is a common symptom of a heart attack. This is the pain from the chest region that radiates to other parts of the body, especially down the back. It is usually seen to occur between the shoulder blades.

11. Feeling Ill

Sometimes a heart attack is accompanied by a feeling of coming down with an illness. This manifests as fatigue or even light headedness. At times, a heart attack can also be masked by symptoms resembling those of an anxiety attack or a sense of doom.

12. No Symptoms

One in every 4 cases of heart attack is silent and shows no chest pain or any other symptom. These kinds of heart attacks are more common with diabetics.

What needs to be remembered is, that a heart attack can sometimes be accompanied by very vague and mild symptoms, and even when it isn’t accompanied by severe chest pain, it is just as serious and life-threatening. Patients often attribute the symptoms of heart attack that they are experiencing to anxiety, stress or a gastric upset.
Seeking medical help as soon as possible in the event of a heart attack is extremely crucial and while an early diagnosis and treatment can save life, a delay in getting medical aid can prove fatal.