Heart health is incredibly important, and everyone should be aware of their own heart’s health status. Heart disease can be fatal and causes more than 600,000 fatalities per year in the United States alone. By keeping your heart healthy and seeking early treatment, you can live a longer life. Here are a few common signs of an unhealthy heart that can tip you off that something needs to change.
Shortness of Breath
Shortness of breath can be caused by all sorts of things, including heart disease. It can leave you feeling like your chest or lungs are heavy or cause you to suddenly breathe rapidly. While there are other causes for shortness of breath, getting evaluated is important to ensure that you remain healthy.
Chest Discomfort (Angina)
Chest discomfort is commonly known as angina. It is a feeling of pain, pressure, pinching, or even burning deep in the chest. You should have any pain in the chest evaluated to ensure that it doesn’t have any more serious causes.
Pain on the surface or that worsens when touched is less likely to be caused by heart conditions. The pain may occur either at rest or during physical exercise. Because of some of the milder heart attack symptoms, you should never ignore this.
Left Shoulder Pain
The heart and left arm may activate the same pain areas in the brain, causing the brain to read heart pain as pain in the shoulder. Called referred pain, this kind of pain is a typical sign of an unhealthy heart. If you notice that you have pain or pressure in your left arm or shoulder that you can’t explain, especially alongside other heart distress signs, seek immediate medical attention.
Abnormal or Irregular Heartbeat
Abnormal or irregular heartbeats (arrhythmias) can be problematic for several reasons. While not all arrhythmias are dangerous, the heart is one aspect of your health that you should never ignore. If you feel like your heartbeat is irregular, seek out medical attention to have it evaluated. This is especially true if you feel like your heart is racing uncontrollably or if you feel like your heart regularly skips a beat.
Fatigue and Low Stamina
Another common sign of an unhealthy heart is constant fatigue and tiredness. When your heart is unhealthy, it cannot pump blood throughout the body regularly enough. This can lead to fatigue, a lack of stamina, or tiredness, especially when associated with dizziness or shortness of breath.