It is estimated that a person suffers a heart attack every 20 in the United States. Every minute, a person dies from a heart attack. Those are startling statistics, but it is important to remember that there are a number of things that you can do that will increase your chances of surviving a heart attack:
Recognize The Signs of A Heart Attack
Many people delay getting medical help because they fail to recognize the signs. Shortness of breath, pain in the chest, chest pressure and left arm pain are some of the common signs of a heart attack. It is important to note that the women may not show any of the classic heart attack symptoms. Stomach pain, sweating, fatigue and nausea are some of the symptoms that a woman may experience when she is having a heart attack. There have been cases reported of people who have had a heart attack without suffering any symptoms.
One of the keys to surviving anything is to properly prepare for it. If you been prescribed nitrates because you have had a history of heart problems, then you want to make sure that you carry your medication with you at all times. You also want to make sure that you carry a cellphone with you so that you can contact emergency medical services.
Get Medical Help
If you suspect that you are having a heart attack, then you will need to get medical help immediately. The earlier you get medical help, the greater your chance of survival will be. You should not attempt to drive yourself to the hospital. Call emergency medical services and notify your family members and friends.
Take An Aspirin
While you are waiting for the paramedics to arrive, you should take an aspirin. Studies have shown that people who take an aspirin during the onset of an heart attack are more likely to survive. If you have been prescribed nitrates, then you may want to take one of them while you are having a heart attack.
Minimize Your Activity
You should not engage in any type of physical activity while you are having a heart attack. Physical exertion will most likely worsen your heart attack. You should sit and wait until the paramedics arrive.
Follow Your Doctor’s Orders
Your doctor will give you instructions for both short-term and long-term care. Short-term care will help minimize the damage that is caused by a heart attack. Long-term care will help reduce your chances of having another heart attack in the future. It is estimated that 18 percent of men and 35 percent of women will have another heart attack within five years of having their first one.
Heart attacks are an extremely common occurrence, but most people can survive if they recognize the signs. If you are having a heart attack, then you will want to notify emergency medical services as quickly as you can. You will also want to make sure that you follow all of your doctor’s instructions once you get to the hospital.
Sam Moser is a freelance content writer who has written almost exclusively for the web since graduating from the School of Journalism at Ryerson University in Toronto, Ontario. In the last few months, Sam has focused on covering home care in Kingston and across Canada.