My Mama and Papa died of heart attack. Heart Attack is the leading cause of death and disability for both men and women not only in the Philippines but globally. Heart disease isn’t contagious. You can’t catch it like you can the flu or a cold. Instead, certain things increase a person’s chances of getting cardiovascular disease. Doctors call these things risk factors.
Some of these risk factors a person can’t do anything about, like being older and having other people in the family who have had the same problems. But people do have control over some risk factors like:
- having high blood pressure
- being overweight
- and not exercising can increase the risk of getting cardiovascular disease.
Symptoms and signs of heart attack may include the following:
- Chest pain or discomfort that is crushing, like a heavy weight; or squeezing, like a tight band around the chest; or an ache in the centre of the chest. The pain may radiate to the neck, jaw, shoulders, arms (especially the left arm), back, abdomen, face or teeth. The pain is persistent (longer than 15 minutes), and does not ease with rest. The pain is sometimes mistaken for indigestion. Note that in some cases, heart attacks are painless.
- Profuse sweating
- Difficulty breathing
- Feeling dizzy or light-headed
- Pale, clammy skin
- The pulse may be fast or irregular.
- The person may suddenly collapse and lose consciousness
First aid for heart attack:
- Encourage the person to sit still, with knees bent to ease strain on the heart.
- Talk to him calmly and reassuringly, and loosen any tight clothing.
- Monitor any changes in condition.
- The person should take one aspirin with water (Unless he is allergic to or unable to take aspirin). Aspirin helps to prevent blood clotting