You’d like to think that there are some things you just can’t miss.
If you drop your nose or lose your toes or your fingers froze, you’d know it pretty quickly – so you DEFINITELY wouldn’t miss a heart attack, right?
Don’t answer that one too fast.
It turns out that you COULD miss a heart attack – and maybe you already have!
A series of new media reports shows just how easy it is to ignore a heart attack… fail to seek help… and live with the “secret damage” of a hidden attack.
It’s a case where what you don’t know CAN hurt you.
It could even KILL you, because that damage – even if you don’t know it’s there – could increase your risk of a second attack and make it deadlier when it does strike.
A major report in The New York Times highlights how easy it is to miss a heart attack.
Mostly, it’s because TV has conditioned folks to think that they know what to look for. It’s Fred Sanford clutching his chest and calling out to his dead wife, right?
“This is the big one!” he’d say. “I’m coming, Elizabeth!”
Sure, a feeling like you’ve been socked in the chest is sure as heck something to worry about – and call an ambulance over.
But many folks feel less pain… subtle pain… or in some cases (especially in older gals), no chest pain at all.
As the Times points out, there are OTHER heart attack signs that don’t get the same attention in TV and movies. Maybe it’s because showing someone sweating and shaking makes them look like a junkie… not a heart patient.
Yet the sweats and shakes can absolutely be a warning sign, as can breathing difficulties, especially if you’re not doing anything that should force your lungs to work hard.
Sudden nausea, pain in the back and neck, swelling in your ankles, and a feeling of butterflies in the chest are ALL signs that your heart is struggling to suck up blood and oxygen.
Sure, it might come back online quick enough, but that short period without the juice could damage muscle, leave behind scars, and even permanently alter the heart’s capacity to get its work done.
That’s why you absolutely need to get help even if it doesn’t feel too bad, the symptoms fade, and whatever it is “passes.”
Call your doc anyway. Call the ER. Seek treatment – or next time around, it could be YOU that passes.