There are heart attack symptoms we are all familiar with, such as debilitating chest pain, radiating pain down one arm, and shortness of breath.
However, women’s heart attack symptoms may vary and manifest themselves differently than symptoms in men.
Many women expect to have a “Hollywood Heart Attack”–the typical chest pain, clutching at the sternum, and dramatic gasping depicted in television shows and movies.
Unfortunately, heart attacks in women are generally more subtle than they are in men. Here are some of the most common women’s heart attack symptoms to be aware of:
1) An Elephant On Your Stomach
Tightness or pressure in the abdomen could be a heart attack signal many women might ignore.
Doctors have described this pressure as the feeling of “an elephant sitting on your stomach”.
Other heart attack signs in the abdominal area might also be mistaken for heartburn. Pay attention to your stomach and if you notice any sudden changes or pain, see your doctor as soon as possible.
2) Simple Activities Become Difficult
Simple activities like walking to the kitchen, getting out of a chair or reaching for something on your bookshelf can become almost strenuous when a heart attack is near.
If those typically simple activities seem difficult or wear you out for no reason, it might mean you’re on the verge of a heart attack and it’s time to see your doctor.
Random, out-of-the-blue sweating is not normal. If this kind of perspiration hits you suddenly and feels stress-related, you might be at risk of a heart attack.
So, if you don’t typically experience this kind of sweating, get it checked out — it could be another sign of a heart attack.
4) Above The Waist Pain or Discomfort
Many doctors will say any random or unexpected pain above your waist should be checked by a doctor, since pain in the jaw, neck, or back may be a sign of an oncoming heart attack.
Most women don’t get these pains checked out because they assume pre-heart attack pain will occur in their chest and left arm.
5) The Silent Heart Attack
Sneaky and deadly, a silent heart attack offers symptoms that are confused with other illnesses such as flu, a simple strained muscle, or unusual fatigue.
Go Red For women states many women who experience silent heart attacks may be told they’re just having an anxiety attack when they go to the doctor.
If you are armed with knowledge of blood pressure, cholesterol, and heart attack symptoms, it will be easier to advocate for yourself in an emergency room.
Silent heart attacks are, in a way, more scary than an obvious heart attack because they still cause scarring and weakening of the heart muscle.
To learn more about women’s heart health, read Heart Problems In Women