Many of us mistakenly believe that a heart attack can happen only as the result of certain diseases, intense emotional distress, or senior age. Although this is partly true, even young and healthy people should know what the potential dangers may be. The body often warns you of its approach weeks before. So, what should you be wary of to avoid disastrous consequences?
A heart attack is an acute coronary syndrome resulting from impaired blood supply to the heart during a spasm or vascular occlusion, as well as a sharp increase in oxygen demand that cannot be satisfied (for example, as a result of atherosclerosis). This condition sometimes leads to the "death" of a certain segment of the heart muscle (myocardial infarction). A sense of pressure and pain in the chest that extends to the neck, jaw, arms, and back (mostly on the left side of the body) testifies to its approach.
The classic symptoms of a heart attack include:
- severe chest pain;
- shortness of breath and difficulty breathing;
- facial skin that is pale or grayish in color;
- dizziness and confusion;
- nausea and vomiting;
- abdominal pain;
- sticky sweat;
- sense of fear or foreboding of impending death.
In addition to age, unhealthy lifestyle (smoking, alcohol and drug use, lack of exercise), and a number of ailments (such autoimmune diseases and cancer), the risk of heart attack is also increased due to factors that many consider unrelated to diseases of the cardiovascular system.
1. Change in exercise routine
Exercise is indisputably necessary to maintain health, but it must be planned with the help of a certified trainer and an observant doctor. The risk of a heart attack increases by a dramatic change in your workout routine, for example, a quick transition from cardio to power loads.
2. Temperature extremes
When the human body is exposed to extreme temperature changes (from very hot to very cold and vice versa), it tries to maintain a comfortable mode by accumulating thermal energy due to the narrowing of blood vessels, which sometimes leads to an attack.
3. Cramps in the lower limbs
Frequent cramps in the legs is another risk factor, since this phenomenon can be caused by diseases of the peripheral arteries. If untreated, this condition may be complicated by gangrene followed by amputation, as well as coronary heart disease.
4. Poor air quality
Inflammation in the tissues of the lungs, inhalation of irritants, and lack of oxygen can also increase the risk of a stroke or heart attack.
Sometimes the heart attack symptoms may be atypical. This is especially true for people with diabetes or neurological disorders that affect the perception of pain. In this case, discomfort in the sternum may not be felt at all, and the main signs of an approaching attack are fatigue and weakness, pain in the upper body, sleep problems, and gastrointestinal disorders.
None of these heart attack risk factors should be ignored. If you are affected by one or more of them, it is recommended to be monitored by a doctor regularly.
This article is solely for informational purposes. Do not self-diagnose or self-medicate, and in all cases consult a certified healthcare professional before using any information presented in the article. The editorial board does not guarantee any results and does not bear any responsibility for any harm that may result from using the information provided in the article.