How do you know if you have angina?
So, you’re feeling some discomfort in your chest? Could be heartburn. It could be gas. Or it could be angina – that’s right, the ‘I-wish-I-hadn’t-eaten-that-burrito’ version of a heart attack.
Angina is less severe than full-blown heart attacks, but it can still damage your ticker over time – so understanding the symptoms and signs is important (trust us on this one).
Let’s explore what might make you utter those oh-so-popular words: “Is it just me or does my chest hurt?”
What Is Angina?
Before we dive into how to recognize angine, let’s first get an idea of what we’re dealing with here.
Angina pectoris (say WHAT?) translates roughly to “chest pain” in Latin. And while there may not actually BE any dancing when it hits (despite its resemblance to anything ending in “-itus”), angina DOES refer to bouts of sudden and sometimes intense pressure or dull ache in the chest cavity.
While most commonly associated with a coronary artery disease diagnosed through testing from angioplasty measurement systems for diagnosis purpose, these pains can also signal other health issues ranging from mild gastrointestinal distress all the way up to major blockages affecting blood flow around actual HEART tissue.
Got an “Oh Shit” chill yet?
Good (and bad) news- only 5% of emergency room visits result in positive findings as having acute coronary syndrome per Cleveland Clinic! But woah Nelly /whoa Nelly/, let’s check out more about what brings people banging down ER doors thinking their loved ones need cardiac bypasses ASAP:
The Different Types Of Chest Pain
Different types of chest pain present differently from person-to-person; Below are five common types:
- Pressure/Squeezing Pain
- Sharp/Stabbing/Cutting Feeling
- Burning/Generalized Warmth In The Center-Chest Region (Recently had your first smore of the summer with a little too much graham cracker)
- Contractions/Muscle Spasms to left arm, neck, jaw and back along with pressure/fullness in chest (a real charmer this one)
- General Chest Discomfort- Watch for feeling just plain unwell like observing “heavy as lead” upper torso regions.
Why does Angina Occur?
Angina occurs when an area of heart tissue doesn’t get enough blood flow, (cue somber wah-wah sound effect here) usually due to restricting or blocking part of their tiny S.N.A.P.S(. Small Native Arteries Preventing Stuff.) networks that circulate through the body like a complicated pipeline system that’d send most people running for Seasonal Affective Disorder meds if they were executives at British Petroleum.
What Are The Symptoms Of Angina?
So what do you need to look out for?
While actually defining /or explaining/ symptoms is somewhat tricky since definitions can vary from person-to-person…some common warning signs include (brace yourselves):
- Pressure / very strong tight squeezing pain
2.Physical exertion increases likelihood/strength of discomfort.
3.Contributing factors such as stress/excitement flare things up.
4.Shortness Of Breath or sudden onset dizziness while doing activities mentioned above
5.Feelings In Upper Body including other uncomfortable sensations beyond simply chest pain– general inability to feel well physically
Of course, everyone experiences it differently – so don’t use anyone else’s experience as gospel truth! Things may differ from WEIRDLY pleasant tingling sensation/slight flutters occurring before more pronounced physical reactions on down the line are indicative./pointing towards angina If you are unsure or think you might be experiencing any of the above, a very important note here-SHUT IT DOOOOWWWNNN and get medical help ASAP.
What’s The Difference Between Stable And Unstable Angina?
Chest pain also comes in STABLE vs UNSTABLE forms; stable angina usually follows exercise or some other sort of physical exertion (climbing a flight of steps definitely counts). Typically after resting for 10-20 minutes things will calm down /but obviously that’s by no means guaranteed/. Unstable angina can come outta nowhere – even at rest /i.e. watching Netflix/, with even more intense discomfort than its stable counterpart.
Some doctors refer to unstable angina as acute coronary syndrome because it can cause blood clots to develop rapidly which lead to sudden BLOCKAGE/HEART ATTACK when it goes without proper attention.
So there you have our rundown on how to spot angina symptoms! Remember: If you’re in doubt don’t hesitate about calling up your doctor right away./’No Pain No Gain’ doesn’t apply here kids! This is one area where the old idiom “better safe than sorry” has real teeth behind it/.
As we wrap things up today, I’ve got two main takeaways:
1) Chest pain isn’t something anyone should ignore but understanding the nuances associated with each type helps differentiate between somethings potentially life-threatening and hopefully just a much milder version trying quite hard/LIFE’S WAAAAAAAAAYYYY too hard- through digestion issues.
2) When protecting your heart health…it pays dividends being hilarious AF…research hasn’t scientifically proven that yet? Well why not be ahead of curve anyhow?
Make sure you acquaint yourselves with other aspects/different types of chest pains as well so that way if anything ever does come up on this front-you’ll know how best/how quickly to react. But we are pretty confident you won’t ever forget- given that the infamous symptom is famously named/best off staying as far away from it as humanly possible!