By Gabe Sanders PhD, NSCA-CSCS
If you exercise, eat right and are physically active you never have to worry about heart disease or having a heart attack, right? Wrong!
In fact, regardless, of your age, health, activity and lifestyle habits, there is an uncontrollable factor in the equation that you may not be able to control. It’s called genetics!
However, you should know that eating healthy, regular exercise and avoiding unhealthy lifestyle habits like smoking and excessive alcohol consumption automatically place you at a lower risk of developing heart disease. Notice the key word “risk.”
The truth is, cardiovascular disease can happen to anyone at any time and aside from taking good care of yourself, the next best thing you can do is to educate yourself about the signs and symptoms of a cardiac event. Educating yourself can save a life, whether it’s your own life or someone you know.
What are the signs and symptoms of a heart attack?
According to the American Heart Association, an obvious sign is chest discomfort or a squeezing chest pain that lasts for several minutes and may come and go. Chest pain can even be accompanied with the classical left arm pain that radiates from your shoulder to your hand.
While these are the classic signs of a heart attack, there are many more signs that you should be aware of and the combination of these signs most likely requires immediate medical attention.
Additional signs and symptoms?
Additional signs of a heart complication can be explained by having pain in your both arms, pain in your back, neck, and it is also rather common to have pain in your jaw. Other signs include a strong heartburn sensation that is not alleviated with acid reflux medicine, cold sweats, nausea, lightheadedness and even shortness of breath.
It is of utmost importance to know that you can experience a heart attack at any age, healthy or not. Understanding the signs and symptoms can save your life, but the last thing you should do is ignore the issue.
A simple trip to the hospital may be the difference between life or death. If you go to the hospital and your signs are not cardiac related, it is better to be safe than sorry!
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American Heart Association. Accessed May 2, 2017. http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/911-Warnings-Signs-of-a-Heart-Attack_UCM_305346_SubHomePage.jsp