Silent Killers: Unrecognized Heart Attacks

Silent Killers: Unrecognized Heart Attacks
Silent Killers: Unrecognized Heart Attacks

Did you know you could have a heart attack and not even realize it? In fact, unrecognized or silent heart attacks account for about half of all the heart attacks in the United States, according to one study.
Most people easily recognize the obvious symptoms of a heart attack. Chest pain is the most obvious, but you might also experience pain in your arm or jaw. These things will send you running to the hospital, where tests can confirm that you had a heart attack. The real problem is the silent heart attacks that go unnoticed or ignored, undiagnosed, and untreated.
Each time you have a heart attack, it causes a thickening in the heart muscle, putting you at more risk for another, potentially deadly heart attack. In fact, those who suffer from silent heart attacks are 3 times more likely to die from one.
How can you recognize these attacks for what they are? Pay attention to any changes in your body. Abnormal fatigue, sweating for seemingly no reason, and even heartburn can be signs of these deadly killers.
If heart disease runs in your family, you don’t get enough exercise, are overweight, have diabetes, or eat an unhealthy diet, it’s time to come clean with your doctor. Sometimes, even physicians may not always recognize the signs that you are having silent heart attacks, so you may need to push the issue and advocate for yourself.
In America, where eating on the go and spending more time using technology than getting exercise are common habits, 735,000 people a year die of heart disease.
Preventing Heart Disease
Even if your genetics put you at high risk, there is a lot you can do to prevent heart disease. Exercise for 20 minutes a day by taking a walk, or even playing a video game that requires movement. Look into eating a diet aimed at diabetics, since it’s high in protein and low in carbs. And, get rid of some stress! Start saying no instead of yes, and do more things that make you happy. Taking care of your heart and health now can head off potentially deadly problems in the future.