A heart attack is the most common cause of death in the world. Every one of us has heard about it and almost all of us have examples in our family. The precise medical term for a Heart attack is ‘ Myocardial Infarction’ or MI.
In MI, the vessels taking blood to the heart are blocked due to the formation of a clot and thus low or no Oxygen for Heart muscles to contract.
We will learn what precautionary steps we can take when someone’s having a heart attack but first we have to know what are the signs of a Heart attack? How can we know that a person is having a Heart attack? Here are some of the signs that can help you diagnose a Heart attack or MI.
Signs of heart attack
- Profound Sweating ( Most common and present in all kind of MI’s).
- Chest tightness or heaviness ( remember patient will not say pain but point out at the chest and say it feels like an elephant has sat of his chest).
- Shortness of Breath ( patient will be taking breaths like he is running a marathon).
- Pain radiating to the left arm or neck or jaw.
- All these will not be relieved with rest and Nitroglycerines.
Well, these are the main symptoms you should be looking for if you are suspecting an MI, but there are exceptions e.g there is an MI called ‘ Silent MI’. Silent MI is literally a Silent heart attack without any symptoms but Sweating and it’s mostly seen in Diabetics.
As chronic diabetes can cause Autonomic dysfunction and our nerves will not feel any Pain or Heaviness but ‘ Profound Sweating’ will be there.
Now let’s come to our main point and that is what should we do if someone is having a ‘Heart Attack’? The average time a person can live with a blocked heart vessel is only 45 minutes, and we have to do these steps in 45 to 60 minutes so that the patient can survive without damage to their heart.
So here are steps we all should do immediately if someone we suspect is having a heart attack in front of us.
Steps to take if someone has a heart attack
- Call an ambulance ( the very first step in every kind of emergency is seeking help as we can only do temporary measures but the permanent solution can only be done in the hospitals).
- Ask the patient to sit down and take deep breaths ( that will increase the oxygen stores and helps the body combating this condition ).
- Ask the patient to cough or stroke them from behind ( that can cause the clot to dislodge from the vessel and thus unblocking the blood flow).
- Give Nitroglycerin or Aspirin to the patient before going to the hospital ( these medications will cause, dilation of the vessels and thinning of the blood, respectively. Remember that only administer these medications if you are sure about the heart attack).
- Take the patient to the hospital after all these steps if the ambulance arrives otherwise on the personal vehicle as he/she does not have much time.
Note: Dark chocolate can be good for your heart if it’s not loaded with sugar and Saturated fat.
Having said all, I would like to say that prevention is always better than treatment. Try to reduce your lipid intake when you are over 30 and exercise for 30 minutes at least 4 times a week. – Stay Fit.