Approximately 54,000 Australians suffer from a heart attack every year. Heart attacks occur when an artery supplying the heart muscle is blocked, and part of the heart muscle is injured.
A heart attack is a life-threatening medical emergency. The good news is that many are not immediately fatal, especially if treated quickly.
It’s important to recognize the early signs of a heart attack because there is a risk of developing a dangerous heart rhythm which can cause a cardiac arrest. Cardiac arrest occurs when your heart stops pumping blood. Four out of five cardiac arrests happen at home, so it’s worth looking at a defibrillator for sale. A defibrillator and a little training could allow a family member to save your life.
This is the most common symptom of a heart attack. The pain is typically a pressure or heaviness sensation in the centre of your chest that lasts more than a few minutes. It often comes and goes, lasting several minutes at a time, but can also be persistent. People sometimes describe it as though someone is squeezing your heart or sitting on your chest.
Discomfort in Other Areas of Your Upper Body
Some people with heart attack also feel pain or discomfort in other parts of the upper body such as other parts of your chest, one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or upper stomach.
People experiencing a heart attack often feel short of breath. There are several reasons for this during a heart attack, but most often it is because the heart is often not moving blood through the lungs as well as it usually does.
During a heart attack, your body will be struggling to function normally. As such, you might feel nauseous or start sweating profusely.
Feeling Lightheaded or Fainting
During a heart attack, you heart will be weakened and, if the condition is left untreated, can seriously damage your heart. Due to a lack of blood supply to the heart muscle itself, the heart is unable to pump enough blood around your body.
The reduced blood flow will mean less blood to your brain and this will leave you feeling lightheaded or could make you faint.
This often starts after chest pain. As the amount of oxygen moving around your body reduces, your muscles will be less able to perform usual functions. In short, you’ll suddenly feel exhausted and may not know why.
Call Emergency Services if you are experiencing symptoms of a heart attack
Heart attack is a medical emergency. Call for emergency medical services if you think you are experiencing a heart attack, even if you are not sure. For some types of heart attack, clot-busting medications can remove the blockage, but they need to be given as soon as possible to work well.
Quick treatment of a heart attack is very important and can reduce the damage to the heart, prevent death and improve recovery.
Minutes matter so don’t delay. Early treatment can save lives.