Health Symptoms You Should Never Ignore
Almost everyone does it - ignores those little (or even big) aches and pains, hoping they will go away. Which usually turns out OK while young, but the rules change when people reach their mid-forties. At that stage of life, there are some health symptoms that should never be ignored.
Chest pain is a classic symptom of a heart attack, but the sensation is not the same for everyone. Rather than actual pain, it may feel like a squeezing, tightness, ache or pressure in the chest, according to the Mayo Clinic. Although some heart attack chest pain is sudden and intense, most start out as mild discomfort or pain in the center of the chest.
Other Heart Attack Symptoms
According to the Centers for Disease Control, heart disease is the number one cause of death in the United States. A heart attack occurs when blood flow to the heart is blocked by a clot, starving the heart muscle of oxygen. Knowing the early warning signs of heart attacks is crucial for preventing death, but most people don't know any symptoms beyond chest pain.
The American Heart Association reports that these additional symptoms may occur, with or without chest pain:
- Aches or discomfort in other parts of the body, including the arm, stomach, jaw, neck and back
- A sudden, cold sweat
- Shortness of breath
- Nausea or vomiting
If these symptoms are ever experienced, medical attention should be sought immediately.
Numbness or Weakness of the Body
Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg could be a symptom of a stroke, especially if it occurs on just one side of the body. The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) reports that this and all symptoms of a stroke occur suddenly.
Other Stroke Symptoms
According to the NINDS, other symptoms of a stroke include:
- Vision problems in one or both eyes
- Trouble talking
- Inability to understand speech
- Severe headache
- Loss of coordination
- Trouble walking
A stroke occurs when blood flow to the brain is blocked or reduced. This deprives the brain of oxygen, causing the brain cells to die. Sudden, severe head pain can also be an early warning sign of a stroke if it is caused by a ruptured aneurysm, a blood vessel in the brain that bursts. (An aneurysm is a life-threatening emergency that demands immediate medical attention.)
The National Stroke Association reports that stroke is the fifth most common cause of death and the most common cause of adult disability in the United States, which is why it is so important to call 911 whenever someone experiences any symptoms of stroke.
Since 1999, DOCTORS UNITED has been offering cost effective, high quality healthcare to patients in the New York area. Come see us for any of your health concerns. We have several Internists, Neurologists and Physiatrists willing to help you.
Yours in health,