Several people complain about burning sensation in the chest, after they have eaten a huge meal. It could be a Heartburn or heart attack or a chest pain which is a result of the decreased blood flow to your heart also known as Angina. A Heartburn or Heart attack or an Angina are all different conditions, but the symptoms may feel similar. The most common sign is a chest pain. Even a muscle spasm in your throat may lead to chest pain.
On many occasions, even skilled and qualified doctors are not always sure from your medical condition and physical exam, what you are going through, unless they perform certain tests in the emergency room if you complain about chest pain.
A heart attack requires immediate medical attention, whereas in case of heartburn an antacid is sufficient. Here are some ways by which you can differentiate between heartburn and heart attack:
1.Heartburn is a burning sensation in your chest, that occurs due to acid reflux, which causes irritation of the esophagus. It’s a most common problem, as it is a result of a heavy meal or the lifestyle we follow. Heart attack is a result of the inadequate blood flow to the heart, which causes pressure on the chest and pain exudes down the arm. Basically, it is due to a coronary artery blockage.
2. Heartburn or indigestion is generally caused due to a heavy meal, but a heart attack can happen anytime.
3. Heart burns start from the breastbone or chest and move towards your neck and throat. There is a sensation that the food is coming back into your mouth. It is a very uncomfortable feeling. Whereas in heart attack, the pain travels from your chest to shoulder, neck and arms.
4. In heart attack a person feels shortness of breath along with sweat, but these symptoms rarely happen with heartburn.
5. People suffering from indigestion or heartburn get very uncomfortable, but there is no risk to your life. Whereas in heart attack the patient requires immediate medical help, as it can be life threatening.
6. In case of indigestion, oral antacid can be taken as the body retorts quickly, but in case of heart attack proper medical treatment is required.
The following are the symptoms of a Heartburn:
- Burning sensation in the upper stomach moves up to your chest
- Generally, occurs after eating a meal
- Doesn’t let you sleep
- Acidic taste in the mouth
- Popping up an antacid usually helps
The following are the signs and indications of a Heart attack:
- Pressure and tightness in the chest
- The pain spreads to your arm or jaws or back
- Indigestion or nausea
- Shortness of breath
- Cold sweat
Other causes of Chest Pain are as follows:
- Intense fear or anxiety attacks
- Esophagus muscle spasm
- Pain in the gallbladder
- Swelling of the tissues in the chest wall, i.e. Pleurisy
As a thumb rule, if you are having a persistent chest pain and confused whether it is a heartburn or heart attack, it is better to seek medical attention. Don’t overlook the sign which can be a potential heart attack and can cause severe damage to the tissue of your heart and can be life threatening.
Note: You could be suffering from a Heartburn or heart attack or a chest pain which is a result of the decreased blood flow to your heart also known as Angina. The most common sign is a chest pain. A heart attack requires immediate medical attention, whereas in case of heartburn an antacid is sufficient.