Signs of a heart attack are well known: chest pain or pressure, shortness of breath, pain in the left arm or jaw, lightheadedness, or chest tightness. However, some overlooked symptoms can signify poor heart health. Those who have heart disease may not have typical symptoms, so it’s essential to maintain good health and speak to your physician if you have any concerns. Additionally, watch out for these often-overlooked symptoms of a heart problem.
Leg or foot pain
Pain or swelling in your legs or ankles could indicate a circulatory problem. Poor circulation in the legs could be peripheral artery disease or a venous issue, so it’s crucial to note symptoms. Swelling that leaves an indentation when you press your finger into it could be a sign of a health concern, such as heart failure. You may need to see a vascular specialist if you have persistent pain or swelling.
Some snoring at night is considered normal, but if you stop breathing or it sounds like you or choking or gasping, it could be sleep apnea. This puts pressure on your heart, so speak to your doctor as you may need a sleep study.
Palpitations or irregular heartbeats
Sometimes irregular heartbeats are normal. When you are nervous, anxious, have too much caffeine, or are excited, an irregular heartbeat can occur. However, if you are resting and feeling heart palpitations, you should speak to your physician. Note when the palpitations occur, what you are doing, how long it happens, and any other factors. Your doctor will want to know all of this information to assess your condition.
Unexplainable aches and pains
If the blood supply to the heart is blocked, you may experience pain in other areas of the body (not just the chest), such as pain in your shoulders, arms, legs, back, jaw, or abdomen. If you are very active (and pumping more blood to your heart), you may experience this pain intensely, and then it might disappear when at rest. If you have any of these unexplainable aches and pains, it could signal a heart problem.
Numerous reasons can cause you to feel dizzy – anxiety, dehydration, etc. Heart issues, however, can lead to dizziness, fainting, and feeling fatigued. If your heart struggles to deliver oxygen to the rest of your body, this can cause a fatigued feeling. Deciphering whether or not it could be a heart problem and take note of the tired feeling happens without a change of lifestyle. For example, increased work hours, poor diet, and more can cause fatigue; however, if there are no lifestyle changes, and you feel exhausted, speak to your doctor.
Don’t miss our blog on six heart-healthy tips for women.