Recovery Is Mental As Well As Physical
Having a heart attack can be a major wake-up call that can lead to stress, anxiety, and depression. Patients are so terrified afterward that they are going to have another, says Dr. Costello. They really feel scared living their day-to-day life. It can also make you more aware of your own mortality. Many patients thought they were healthy beforehand and now they have a chronic issue thats going to need to be monitored foreverthat and realizing they could have died takes a huge mental toll, says Dr. Costello.
Talk to your doctor about any depression or anxiety that doesnt lift and look into joining a support group. Meeting other survivors and seeing them living their lives can be very helpful, says Dr. Costello.
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Is There Anything That Distinguishes These Symptoms How Do You Know When Those Subtle Atypical Symptoms Are Concerning
Its important to know your risk for heart disease in order to assess early symptoms. Dr. Xu says when he works with a patient, they discuss his or her family and personal history, blood pressure, cholesterol levels, age and disease history to determine a risk level for heart attacks.
Within this context of risk, they talk about symptoms. Are they typical or not? How are they experienced? At rest or during exertion? Are they associated with emotional stress or cold weather? Are they happening in conjunction with other symptoms such as shortness of breath, rapid heartbeat or cold sweats? This is the starting point for a treatment plan.
How Long Does A Heart Attack Last
Initial heart attack symptoms, including chest pain and shortness of breath, may come and go. Symptoms often last around 10 minutes or longer.
A study published in Critical Pathways in Cardiology found that symptoms lasting less than five minutes are unlikely to indicate a heart attack, while symptoms lasting longer than five minutes should be taken seriously as signs of a myocardial infarction .
However, this finding comes from only one study. So if you have symptoms lasting longer than a few minutes, you need to call 911.
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Heart Attack Symptoms In Women Vs Men
Women are more likely than men to have silent heart attacks and heart attacks without chest pain. Heart attacks are also more likely to start when a woman is at rest or experiencing mental stress.
That means its especially important for women to watch out for symptoms like shortness of breath, extreme fatigue, nausea or vomiting, or pain in the jaw, arms or back.
Also, we now know that young women are particularly prone to a type of heart event called a spontaneous coronary artery dissection , which we talk about in more depth below.
Top Tips For Physical Activity
- Talk to your doctor, nurse, health worker or cardiac rehabilitation team member to make sure your exercise is safe and suitable.
- Stop and rest if an activity causes you pain, or if you get very tired, dizzy or short of breath.
- Carry your mobile phone with you, in case you feel unwell and need to call for help.
- If you have been prescribed angina medicine, keep it with you during exercise.
- Dont do exercise straight after eating or after drinking alcohol.
- Drink water before and after exercise .
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What Four Things Happen Right Before A Heart Attack
Here are 4 signs of heart attack to be on the lookout for:
- #1: Chest Pain, Pressure, Squeezing, and Fullness.
- #2: Arm, Back, Neck, Jaw, or Stomach Pain or Discomfort.
- #3: Shortness of Breath, Nausea, and Lightheadedness.
- #4: Breaking Out in a Cold Sweat.
- Heart Attack Symptoms: Women vs Men.
- What Next?
What Are The Signs Of An Unhealthy Heart
- YOU SHOULD KNOW THESE 10 SIGNS OF AN UNHEALTHY HEART. In the United States, heart disease is the leading cause of death.
- Shoulder and chest ache.
- Problems of snoring and sleeping.
- Sexual Functioning Problems.
- Irregular heartbeat is a condition in which the heartbeat is irregular.
- Gum and jaw pain, as well as mouth issues.
- Legs and feet that are puffy.
- Fatigue and shortness of breath
Why Are Lifestyle Changes Important
Making changes in your lifestyle is one of the most important things you can do to prevent another heart attack, heart disease and stroke. The ABCs of prevention are:
- Avoid Tobacco As a nonsmoker, you can go so many places and enjoy so many experiences that were off limits to you as a smoker.
- Become More Active Regular physical activity will ease stress and depression, help control weight and help lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
- Choose Good Nutrition Good nutrition will help control your weight, lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
Even if you’re taking prescription medication, it’s still extremely important to lead a heart-healthy lifestyle. Learn more about the lifestyle changes for heart attack prevention.
When Should I See A Doctor
Its important not to ignore symptoms and wait until they become severe. If you have a concern, talk to your doctor. If heart disease is caught early, there are many lifestyle changes you can make to reduce your risk of further problems: eat a healthy diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables, get regular exercise , maintain a healthy weight, drink alcohol in moderation , and dont smoke.
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Precaution Tips After A Mild Heart Attack
If you have suffered a mild heart attack, your doctor may recommend some lifestyle and health changes in order to reduce your risk of experiencing a secondary cardiac event. These tips include:
Stop smoking: Smoking is a major risk factor for heart disease, as it damages the walls of the blood vessels and may prevent blood and oxygen from reaching the heart and organs. Smoking tobacco also encourages the formation of blood clots that can cause heart attacks, while the nicotine found in cigarettes can raise your blood pressure.
Control your blood pressure: Managing your blood pressure can prevent excess stress from being placed on your heart and blood vessels. Talk to your doctor about ways to naturally lower and manage your blood pressure, as well as the medicinal options that are available to you.
Control your cholesterol: An excess of LDL or bad cholesterol can increase your risk of heart disease, and if your levels are high, your doctor may recommend a prescription to control it as well as encourage you to eat healthier and exercise regularly.
Check for diabetes: Be sure to get screened for diabetes, as both type 1 and type 2 diabetes can increase your risk of suffering a heart attack or stroke.
Exercise: Exercising regularlyespecially cardio activitiescan help make your heart stronger and lower your cholesterol and blood pressure. Jogging, running, walking, bicycling, and swimming are all good examples of cardio exercises to help get your heart pumping.
How Do You Feel After A Mild Heart Attack
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What Do You Do If You Have A Heart Attack
If you have any of the listed symptoms:
- tell someone and ask them to get help right away
The faster you get help, the better your chances of surviving a heart attack. Half of heart attack deaths happen within 2 hours of the first signs.
On average, Canadians wait almost 5 hours before getting medical help. Many people find it hard to believe that they are having a heart attack. They convince themselves that the symptoms are something else and that they will go away.
Not getting help for your symptoms could lead to death. New therapies and drugs can reduce damage and save your life if treatment begins soon enough. Your health care provider will work with you to determine treatment and recovery needs.
If you have suffered a heart attack, having important health information close by can help medical staff treat you. Carry personal health information with you at all times and have it posted by your phone. You may not be able to tell medical staff this information yourself, depending on your condition.
Your list should include:
- telephone and health care number
- medical history
- current medications
- health care provider
- health insurance number for expenses that are not covered under provincial health insurance plans, such as:
- ambulance services
What Can Mimic A Heart Attack
Pulmonary embolism, for example, may look like a heart attack and is just as dangerous. A pulmonary embolism occurs when a blood clot forms in a pulmonary artery. The clot blocks blood flow to the lungs, causing the tissue to die. A pulmonary embolism is a life-threatening medical condition that necessitates urgent medical attention.
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What Are The Signs Of A Heart Attack
In both men and women, the most common sign of a heart attack is chest pain or discomfort, but you can experience a heart attack without chest pressure. Here are some important warning signs to be aware of:
If you experience any of the above emergency signs, its important to call 9-1-1 for the fastest medical help. For more information, please visit the heart and stroke website.
Tips For Heart Attack Prevention
The goal after your heart attack is to keep your heart healthy and lower your risk of having another heart attack. Take your medications as directed, make healthy lifestyle changes, see your doctor for regular heart checkups, and consider a cardiac rehabilitation program.
Why do I need to take drugs after a heart attack?
You might take certain drugs after a heart attack to:
- Prevent blood clots
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What Should I Do After A Mild Heart Attack
After a heart attack, there are five things you can do.
- 1 Be aware of the alert signs. Thinkstock provided the picture.
- 2 Stick to your prescription schedule. You probably walked out of the hospital with a shopping bag full of new medications and guidance about how to take them on the day of your discharge.
- 3 Change your way of life.
- 4 Enroll in a cardiac rehabilitation program.
- 5 Keep in touch with the medical team.
Manage Other Risk Factors
Heart disease can run in families, but the majority of heart attacks may be attributed to lifestyle choices.
Aside from diet, exercise, and smoking habits, its important to manage other risk factors that might contribute to future heart attacks.
Talk to your doctor about:
- mental health concerns, such as anxiety and depression
- alcohol consumption
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Waiting For An Ambulance
If you have had a heart attack, it’s important that you rest while you wait for an ambulance, to avoid unnecessary strain on your heart.
If aspirin is available and you are not allergic to it, slowly chew and then swallow an adult-size tablet while you wait for the ambulance.
Aspirin helps to thin your blood and improve blood flow to your heart.
What Can I Do To Recover After A Heart Attack
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If youve had a heart attack, your heart may be damaged. This could affect your hearts rhythm and its ability to pump blood to the rest of the body. You may also be at risk for another heart attack or conditions such as stroke, kidney disorders, and peripheral arterial disease .
You can lower your chances of having future health problems following a heart attack with these steps:
- Physical activityTalk with your health care team about the things you do each day in your life and work. Your doctor may want you to limit work, travel, or sexual activity for some time after a heart attack.
- Lifestyle changesEating a healthier diet, increasing physical activity, quitting smoking, and managing stressin addition to taking prescribed medicinescan help improve your heart health and quality of life. Ask your health care team about attending a program called cardiac rehabilitation to help you make these lifestyle changes.
- Cardiac rehabilitationCardiac rehabilitation is an important program for anyone recovering from a heart attack, heart failure, or other heart problem that required surgery or medical care. Cardiac rehab is a supervised program that includes
- Physical activity
- Education about healthy living, including healthy eating, taking medicine as prescribed, and ways to help you quit smoking
- Counseling to find ways to relieve stress and improve mental health
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Why You Should Call 911 For A Possible Heart Attack
You may feel hesitant to call 911 when you arent certain that youre having a heart attack. You might try the wait-and-see approach instead, or you might consider going to the hospital by car.
If youre truly having a heart attack, the quickest way to get help is calling 911. Youll receive care as soon as EMTs arrive, and people who arrive by ambulance to the emergency department for heart attacks are seen sooner than people who arrive by car. Damage to the heart muscle may occur within the first 90 minutes after a heart attack, so getting prompt care is essential, even if you arent entirely certain that what youre experiencing is a heart attack.
Waiting For Emergency Medical Attention
If a doctor has previously prescribed heart medication for heart conditions, a person should make sure that they have taken this medication. Examples of such heart medication include beta-blockers and nitroglycerin.
Others may take an aspirin tablet, which can thin the blood. However, a person should only take aspirin if a doctor or first responder has recommended it.
Urgent treatment is necessary to reduce the risk of serious damage to the heart tissue.
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Heart Attacks In Older Adults
Your risk for a heart attack and cardiovascular disease increases after age 65.
This is due to age-related changes that can occur in the heart, including high blood pressure and hardening of the arteries .
Having a heart attack as an older adult also comes with special considerations.
Diet and exercise training are crucial for future heart attack prevention, but it may take longer to recover. Older adults may also be at a higher risk for cognitive issues and reduced functional movements.
To reduce the long-term effects of a heart attack, its recommended that older adults be especially vigilant about increasing physical activity when theyre able.
This will help strengthen the heart muscle and protect it from future damage.
Another consideration is trying to reduce your blood pressure, as needed. Hypertension is the most common heart-related condition in adults over age 75.
What A Heart Attack Doesnt Feel Like
Not all chest pain is a heart attack symptom. Pain isunlikely to be heart-related when it:
- Is momentary,lasting only for a few seconds.
- Feels like apricking sensation.
- Is in a small,well-localized area of your chest.
- Can bereproduced when you press on your chest or move your arm.
- Radiates belowyour abdomen and into your legs.
The best way to guard yourself from a heart attack is to eat a healthy diet, do regular aerobic activity, avoid smoking, manage diabetes if you have it, have regular checkups with your primary care provider, and know and control your cholesterol levels, says Dr. Menon.
If you notice a sudden changein your ability to perform physical activity, get to a doctor right away.
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For The First Few Months She Had Panic Attacks When She Thought She Was Having Another Heart Attack
Some people had lost their confidence after their heart attack. In many cases, this was only for a short while until they attended a cardiac rehabilitation programme . Others said that it had taken many months or in a few cases, years to build up their confidence. One man felt his confidence had not returned to how it was before his heart attack, ten years later.
Some people who had felt a bit down or low for the first few weeks after their heart attack managed to overcome these feelings. A few experienced depression, which they had found difficult to overcome . One man was severely depressed with suicidal thoughts during the first few months after his heart attack. Reiki and counselling had helped some of those we spoke to If depression continues beyond six weeks, people should talk to their GP or cardiac rehabilitation nurse, as it can hinder recovery from a heart attack.
A few people said they had not felt depressed but had felt quite tearful and emotional at times.Some people felt angry or frustrated, especially those who had, had a heart attack at a young age. One woman explains that she tried to be positive, but often she felt angry and depressed at having a heart attack when she was only thirty-seven. One man, who couldnt do the things he could before, felt angry and frustrated during the first year after his heart attack.