How To Differentiate a Panic Attack vs a Heart Attack
By GILBERT CARDIOLOGY
September 01, 2021
Category: Cardiology
Tags: Heart Attack   Panic Attack  

Dr. Zaki Lababidi and Dr. Khaled Albasha of Gilbert Cardiology can keep your heart healthy and help prevent heart attacks in Gilbert, AZ.

Are Panic Attacks and Heart Attacks Equally Dangerous?

While a panic attack can feel as serious and dangerous as a heart attack to the person experiencing it, panic attacks are not life-threatening, while heart attacks can be deadly. This is why being able to differentiate between the two ailments is so incredibly important. Panic attacks are not deadly. However, if they are frequently happening to you, you should seek help. They are detrimental to your quality of life and mental health.

Panic Attacks and Heart Attacks Share Many Symptoms

You should familiarize yourself with the symptoms so that you may recognize them in an emergency. Shared symptoms between panic attacks and heart attacks include:

  • Pressure in the chest
  • Pain in the jaw, head, chest, arms, upper chest, or upper back
  • Lightheadedness
  • Confusion
  • Fast or pounding heartbeat
  • Fainting
  • Sweating, including cold sweats
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting

Because there are a lot of common symptoms, it’s essential to pay very close attention to the minute details that set panic attacks and heart attacks apart. The professionals at Gilbert Cardiology in Gilbert, AZ, are here to help.

Four Key Differences Between Heart Attacks and Panic Attacks in Gilbert, AZ

If you can figure out the trigger, you can usually determine which kind of attack you’re experiencing. Usually, heart attacks are caused by physical stressors, while emotional ones cause panic attacks. Heart attacks usually occur directly after strenuous physical activity or physical strain.

Heart attacks feel like intense pressure on your chest. This pressure feels like a hefty object is sitting on your body. Heart attacks are usually associated with an aching or even burning sensation in the chest, like heartburn.

Panic attacks are associated with intense, sharp, or stabbing pain in the chest or heart. Chest discomfort that is difficult to describe is usually a good indicator of a panic attack. When paired with a pounding or racing heart, it’s an excellent sign of a panic attack instead of a heart attack.

Panic attacks can last a few minutes up to 60 or 90 minutes. Eventually, the attack will subside, and you will begin to calm down and feel better, but heart attacks will not let up. Another telltale sign of a heart attack is that the pain comes in waves. The pain may fall to a 3 or 4 on the pain scale but quickly rise to a 9 or 10 before easing up again.

Schedule an Appointment with Gilbert Cardiology Today

Dr. Lababidi and Dr. Albasha at Gilbert Cardiology can take care of your heart and prevent heart attacks in Gilbert, AZ. Call (480) 786-9100 to schedule your appointment.

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