Symptoms of heart disease can be difficult to identify. However, paying attention to your heart and giving it the care it needs is essential. Your health insurance generally covers a certain number of heart screenings over time. You should also be sure to have your heart checked by your primary care doctor during your annual physical. Outside of these checkups, it is essential to know the signs and symptoms of heart disease so you can get any problems addressed as soon as possible.
If you recognize any signs of heart disease, you should immediately schedule an appointment with a doctor or go to the emergency room if the situation is life-threatening. Although this list is not all-inclusive, here are a few symptoms to look out for:
- You are lightheaded or dizzy, particularly upon standing up.
- You feel as though your heart is racing.
- You experience pain, pressure, tightness or squeezing in your chest. This pain may come and go or it may be constant.
- You feel pain in you jaw, neck, throat, back or abdomen.
- You suffer from shortness of breath.
- Your energy levels are lower than usual.
- You have difficulty participating in physical activities.
- You break into a cold sweat.
Most of these symptoms tend to present during a specific heart-related event, such as a heart attack or arrhythmia, and women and men may have different symptoms. For example, although both men and women may experience signs of a heart issue from the above list, women’s heart attack symptoms may be less likely to be related to chest pain (e.g., chest pressure, shortness of breath, fatigue, vomiting, nausea and/or back, arm, upper abdomen or jaw pain).
You and your health care provider can also identify signs of heart disease in your cholesterol and blood pressure numbers. If both of these numbers are high, you may be dealing with some sort of heart disease and should seek additional care.
Thankfully, most health insurance plans offer coverage for a wide range of tests and screenings for your heart that can give you answers. Talk to your doctor about the possibility of additional heart care and check with your insurance agent to be sure that your current health insurance plan fits your needs.