February is National Heart Health Month.

Heart disease can be controlled, even in those with genetic risk factors. There are always things you can be doing, especially if you are at risk for heart disease to help prevent heart disease or a heart attack.

That being said, knowing the top warning signs of a heart attack is critical for prompt diagnoses and treatment. Many heart attacks start slowly, unlike the dramatic portrayal we often seen in the movies, 8-top-warning-signs-of-a-heart-attackbeginning with mild pain or discomfort. There are times when a person experiencing a heart attack may not even be sure of what is happening. Others can come on suddenly and intensely. Cardiac infarction (the medical term for heart attack) symptoms often vary, and even a person who has experienced prior heart attacks can have different symptoms in a subsequent heart attack.

8 Top Warning Signs of a Heart Attack

Although chest pain or pressure is the most common symptom of a heart attack, hHeart attack victims may experience a diversity of symptoms that include:

  • Chest discomfort or pressure
  • Shortness of breath, with or without chest discomfort
  • Pain or tingling in the left arm
  • Cold sweats often coupled with lightheadeness
  • Lightheadedness
  • Heartburn and/or indigestion
  • Nausea often leading to vomiting
  • Stomach pain or the feeling of bad gas pains
  • General malaise (a vague unidentifiable feeling of sickness)

However, often there can be a lack of symptoms, which is why regular testing, especially for those with a past history or genetic factors, is important. As a matter of fact, a significant percentage of all heart attacks are what are known as “silent”,  especially amongst those living with diabetes.

What Steps to Take If You Fear Someone is Suffering Heart Attack Symptoms:

Learn the signs above, but it is vital to have it checked out by a doctor if you have concerns that it might be a heart attack, or if the person has a history of cardiac distress.

If you or someone you know is experiencing mild signs and is unsure if they are suffering from a heart attack, our providers will immediately evaluate them, take vital signs and administer an EKG to determine next steps. If believed to be a heart event,  our urgent care providers will immediately call 911 and order an ambulance.

One thing applies to everyone, though: If you suspect you’re having a heart attack, call for emergency medical help immediately. Do not drive yourself to the hospital! Minutes matter! Fast action can save lives, maybe your own.

Feel free to call or stop by either of our AFC Urgent Care Centers in Danbury if you have concerns or questions, where our staff  will be happy to answer any questions and direct you to the appropriate action.