How to tell if you are having a heart attack

  • Updated: December 21, 2013 - 2:00 PM

How to tell if you are having a heart attack

You’ve seen enough heart attacks in the movies that you’re pretty sure you know what one looks like, right? The person gasps for air, feels a sudden sharp pain in the chest, falls to the floor ... nope. The “Hollywood-style heart attack” is misleading, Paige Fowler writes on the website of Men’s Health magazine, citing a study of 900 heart attack patients.

Researchers at Trinity College in Ireland found that just over a third had cinematic symptoms. The others experienced slower, subtler signals of trouble — gradually growing pain in the chest and left arm, shortness of breath, a sense of fatigue.

The reason this matters is that speedy treatment is key to heart attack survival “and even a 90-minute delay could be disastrous,” says Dr. Prediman Shah, a cardiologist.

So the magazine advises — especially if you have risk factors for heart disease — watching out for heart attack cues that are not quite as dramatic, such as a cold sweat, a sudden feeling of nausea and symptoms that feel like heartburn. If in doubt, call 911 — and chew an aspirin to attack that possible blood clot.

Washington Post

Money doesn’t buy everything?

The adage may be true: You can’t buy happiness. An article in Psychology Today cites a new study that indicates being rich doesn’t necessarily mean a trouble-free adolescence. Suniya Luthar, a professor at Columbia University’s Teachers College, found that affluent youths — particularly girls — reported higher levels of depression and drug and alcohol use than their poorer urban counterparts.

Also troubling: Affluent children today seemed to be more vulnerable than in previous generations. Luthar attributed that to a “culture of high-octane overachievement.” Youths from wealthier backgrounds felt pressured to do as well as if not better than their parents. And because they have financial means, there were few excuses for falling short of expectations.

Luthar acknowledges that it is difficult not to push children to do their very best at a time when competition for elite colleges and good jobs is fierce. But she suggests that in addition to celebrating achievement, parents should emphasize the importance of values such as kindness, honesty and decency.

Washington Post

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