Everyone knows the story of the ugly duckling who turned out to be a breathtaking swan. The obvious moral of this story is that some things, upon first glance, are not what they seem to be. It is with the ugly duckling’s story in mind that the Lake Forest home health team at Partners in Senior Care encourages you to remember Women’s Heart Health Month with the “IF She Were a SWAN…” Challenge.
As with men, a woman’s most common heart attack indicator is chest pain. But while some heart attacks are immediate and intensive, most of them actually start slowly and gradually with minimal discomfort. The National Institutes of Health notes that women often are impacted by physical effects for up to a month or more before experiencing the heart attack itself. Additionally, women are to some extent more likely than men to experience and report some of the other less predictable symptoms. Use the letters in IF and SWAN to bear in mind the additional indicators to be on the lookout for, which include:
- Sleep disturbances
- Weakness in the arms
Regardless of whether you are a woman or a man, if you are experiencing any of the symptoms above and suspect it might possibly be a heart attack, even if you are not sure, it is essential to find medical help right away. A difference of five minutes could save your life. Calling 911 is normally the fastest way to get lifesaving treatment. Emergency medical services staff can begin treatment up to an hour sooner than arriving at the hospital by car. They are also trained in reviving someone whose heart has stopped. Patients with chest pain who arrive by ambulance also generally receive faster treatment at the hospital.
While it is essential for everyone to be able to identify the signs and symptoms of a heart attack, it is specifically crucial for caregivers to know what to look for when providing care for their loved ones.
If you or someone you love has already encountered a heart attack and needs further support, either at home or in a care facility, the professional Lake Forest home health care services available through Partners in Senior Care can help. Contact us to schedule your no-cost care consultation at 847-548-1330.