Heart disease is, sadly, all too common. You probably know someone who has struggled with their heart health, and maybe you’ve even lost a loved one to heart disease.
Heart problems can arise from both lifestyle factors and genetics, and it’s very important to be aware of the most common signs that something might not be right. This is especially true for women, who often don’t get the same symptoms as men when they’re about to have a heart attack.
If you’re a woman and you recognize any of the following six danger signs in yourself, you should see a doctor right away.
1. Pain – but not in the chest
You might expect heart problems to cause pain in the chest. Sometimes this is the case – but sometimes, heart issues can cause pain in seemingly unrelated areas of the body.
In women, pain in the jaw, neck, and back can all be related to heart trouble. That doesn’t mean you should panic if your back hurts – but it does mean you should go to the doctor and get checked out.
Everyone has stomach pain sometimes, and it’s not usually an indicator of anything dangerous. Sometimes, though, a stomachache can signal that something more serious is going on.
Some women who have had heart attacks report feeling severe stomach pain, nausea, pressure, or a heartburn-like sensation before the heart attack occurred.
Even if stomach pain isn’t connected to heart problems, it can be difficult to live with, so it’s best to visit the doctor if you have this symptom.
3. Cold sweats
Breaking out in a cold sweat can be a symptom of heart trouble, especially in women. If you’ve found yourself feeling cold and clammy lately, it might warrant a trip to the doctor’s office, especially if you don’t think you’re sick with a fever.
4. Trouble breathing or a feeling of vertigo
If you get dizzy suddenly or you find it hard to breathe, take it seriously. Dizziness and shortness of breath are both major red flags for heart trouble.
However, these symptoms can also be a sign of a panic attack – and worrying about your heart when you’re having a panic attack won’t make anything better! If you find yourself feeling dizzy or short of breath, sit down somewhere quiet and breathe as deeply as you can. If your symptoms don’t subside within ten or fifteen minutes, it’s time to call the doctor.
5. Feeling tired for no reason
There are lots of different causes for fatigue, and heart issues are one of them. If you’re feeling unusually worn out, even after a good night’s sleep, it could be a sign that your heart isn’t working correctly.
6. Pain or other unusual sensations in the chest
Pain or pressure in the chest can signal heart trouble in both women and men. If something doesn’t feel right in your chest, it’s always best to get it checked out, just for your own peace of mind.
Many people don’t know about these symptoms of heart problems in women, so spread the word! Show this article to your mother, sisters, or female friends so they can keep themselves safe.