Did you know that the symptoms of heart disease in women can be different than in men? Since it’s the leading cause of death for women, during February’s National Heart Disease Awareness month, we want to make sure we all know the signs of heart problems. Nobody wants to spend Valentine’s Day in the hospital!
The most common symptom of a heart attack in women is pain or discomfort in your chest. But contrary to what you would expect, it’s not always severe, or even the first and primary symptom. Women can even have a heart attack without any chest pain. Other symptoms likely to occur are:
- Neck, jaw, shoulder, or upper back pain.
- Shortness of breath
- Pain in your arms
- Feeling nauseous
- Feeling dizzy
- Fatigue that’s out of the ordinary
Even when feeling chest pain as a symptom of a heart attack, most women don’t think of it as painful, but rather a bit of tightness. It often happens when resting. Women also often don’t visit an emergency room or a doctor until after major heart issues have happened, as they might downplay their symptoms or figure they’ll drive themselves when they have time. We know, we have many responsibilities too! But if you or a family member or friend is feeling any of these symptoms, please prioritize medical care at an emergency room as soon as possible.
Several factors influence the risk of heart disease, including high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and obesity, but women are affected even more by other factors. These include diabetes, depression, smoking, inactivity, menopause, or pregnancy complications. Inflammatory diseases such as lupus or rheumatoid arthritis can also come with a higher risk of heart disease.
Improve Your Odds
To make sure you’re around for family and friends long into the future, follow some simple steps.
- Quit smoking
- Workout regularly
- Keep your weight healthy
- Eat a nutritious diet
- Manage any regular medications carefully
Heart disease doesn’t affect mainly men, or mainly older women. It can affect any of us, creeping up unsuspectingly when we think we’re safe. Make sure you take steps to maintain your health, and make a doctor’s appointment if you need byscheduling a visit today with the button below. We look forward to hearing from you!
Dr. Julie Drolet
P.S. If you think you feel hot all the time from a possible heart problem, it could also be your hormones. You can find out more about them in our free webinar, found here.