I understand that heart attack sufferers are mostly the elderly. The condition is said to increase with age. But people are still skeptical about teens, including young adults experiencing a heart attack at such a young age. So here goes a critical question:
Can a 16 year old have a heart attack?
Let’s begin with this analogy. Your child comes back home, complaining of chest pain. It’s a heart attack. That’s what your mind tells you. Have you been in such a situation? Or maybe you have a different story. Anyway, here is something you need to understand. Heart attack gets worse with age. What I mean is that the possibility of one developing this condition increases with age. So when your child, who is probably 16 years old, comes back complaining about chest pain, don’t just conclude that he or she has a heart attack. You also shouldn’t feel relaxed either. Take the child to the hospital for a check-up to be sure it is not a heart problem.
So that’s what you need to know about a 16 year old suffering heart attack. However, I provided more information about this topic. So, continue reading!
Heart Attack: What’s The Meaning?
You may have read or heard in the news that a particular person died of a heart attack. Or maybe someone in the family has had one and survived. The truth is, it’s not easy to survive a heart attack. So many persons lost their lives to this silent killer.
Now, what does having a heart attack means? Well, it means the heart no longer receives enough blood. Just as we need food to survive and perform our daily activities, the heart also required oxygenated blood to function. When it doesn’t receive it, then it stops working automatically. And when the heart stops working, nothing else does. There is no oxygenated blood to supply the heart muscles anymore.
A heart attack is something no one prays to experience. I say this because the condition can be very discomforting. One tends to feel uncomfortable pressure, fullness, and pain in the chest area. There’s also going to be discomfort experienced in other parts of the body, particularly one’s upper body part. That’s how this condition can be.
Heart Attack Warning Signs: Does It Appear At 16?
Let me start by saying that teenagers can experience a heart attack. It not only attacks adults. Plus, the reason for their heart attack might not be as a result of drug abuse or cholesterol buildup in the artery. Instead, it could be as a result of coronary artery spasm.
So what’s this coronary artery spasm? The term refers to a sudden tightening of the heart’s artery muscles. When this condition occurs, one’s arteries become incredibly narrow, thus preventing blood from getting to the heart.
Coronary artery spasms are sometimes temporary and brief, although that’s not always the case. In most cases, this condition can become more severe. The aftermath can be a heart complication like a heart attack.
The work of the coronary artery is to ensure blood is supplied to one’s heart. This condition can also happen to everyone, not only teenagers. As I earlier said, the chance of developing a heart attack increases with age. The same goes for coronary artery spasm.
Again, it is known that possible signs of heart attack are more visible at the age of 18. But that doesn’t mean they cannot occur much younger. Parents and relations should be on the lookout for these signs. It is also better to visit the doctor when one has reoccurring chest pain. If there’s a need for a cardio test to be done, you will be informed by your doctor.
So let’s go over to the coronary artery spasm. You will have a better understanding of the condition and be able to make an informed decision.
How Does Coronary Artery Spasm Feel Like?
As earlier discussed, when one experiences spasm, the heart doesn’t receive enough oxygen. Think about your car. What happens when the hose supplying fuel to the carburetor is blocked or cuts off? The car stops moving.
That’s what happens when the heart no longer receives enough oxygenated blood. It stops function temporary, and the entire organs in the body shut down. When muscle spasm occurs, the individual suffering the condition tends to feel excruciating pain in the chest known as angina.
There are different names for this sort of pain in the medical world. It might be known as Prinzmetal’s, variant, or atypical angina.
What Causes Coronary Artery Spasm?
You might be wondering what the cause of coronary artery spasm is. Well, here’s the answer. The two major factors responsible for this condition are high cholesterol and blood pressure.
So, it’s not caused by something different. It’s also important to note that coronary artery spasm might not be severe. Many people have experienced and are still alive to tell tales. But it’s not advisable to sit there and do nothing because you survived this condition.
You see, this heart spasm can be life-threatening. So, seek urgent medical attention and proper treatment. The reason you need adequate examination is that there might some underlying problems waiting to explode. And that problem could be a heart attack.
Coronary Artery Spasm: What Are The Symptoms?
Heart attacks can strike without a warning sign. It’s often called the silent killer. However, the Coronary artery doesn’t. It gives signs before striking. Now the question is, what are those symptoms? Let’s find out. But know it’s also essential to re-examine yourself to be sure that you haven’t had any of the symptoms.
Here are symptoms of the condition:
- Trouble breathing
- Chest pain where you will feel there’s massive pressure on your chest.
- Pain that moves from the chest to other parts of your body such as arms, throat, jaws, and even your shoulder blades. It can also spread to your stomach and seem as if you have an indigestion problem or ulcer.
So these are the signs that coronary artery spasm is about to rear its ugly head. You have to be on red alert and visit your doctor for evaluation of the condition and possible treatment. However, there are things you can do to save yourself from this condition. More on that below!
Preventing Coronary Artery Spasm: Steps You Need To Take
Health is wealth; that’s what everyone knows. And there are steps one can take to lead a healthy life. The truth is, doctors are still a bit confused about what causes spasm in the artery. They also don’t fully understand ways one can prevent this problem. But you can reduce your risk of having coronary artery disease by avoiding factors that lead to heart disease problems.
- Lower intake of alcohol
- Consume a balanced diet
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Avoid smoking
- Don’t ever work yourself out. Stress can cause more problems for you
Is It Possible For Someone To Have A Heart Attack Without Knowing?
First, the answer is yes. It is possible to develop a heart attack without knowing. You don’t have to experience signs like chest pain, shortness of one’s breath, including cold sweats to know you have the condition.
A heart attack is known as a silent killer. It’s also called silent ischemia, meaning there’s a lack of oxygen in the muscle of one’s heart. The reason they sometimes refer to it this way is that someone could have a heart attack without knowing.
What happens is that the sufferer can have no symptom, minimal symptom, or unable to recognize that there’s a problem. But it’s like other cases of heart attack where blood is prevented from getting to a section of the heart, and thus results in heart damage.
Many doctors have repeatedly met with patients who complain of fatigue and other problems that reveal that they have a heart attack. Most of them don’t even know they have the condition until an EKG or MRI shows it. They might have also suffered the disease for weeks or months ago without knowing.
Do Women Experience A Silent Heart Attack More Than Men?
There are different studies on this. But the majority of them claim that silent heart attack is somewhat common in female folks than males. However, the risk factor for a silent heart attack is the same as other forms of the condition such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure, age, obesity, and family history.
Is Silent Heart Attack Dangerous?
Well, one might be able to come out alive after experiencing a silent heart attack. But the condition can be worse if left untreated or adequately treated. This condition causes blood not to flow to certain parts of one’s heart, which causes heart damages and could give rise to other heart diseases.
Experiencing A Silent Heart Attack: What Should You Do?
The first thing you need to do is to remain calm. Don’t be frightened by the thought of the condition getting worse. Then call 911 for help. Now when you arrive at the hospital, let the doctor know that you believe you have a heart attack. Otherwise, they may think its anxiety attack and miss the right thing.
You can also let someone accompany you and inform the doctor that you have a heart attack. Don’t be calm about this.
Wrapping It Up
So, can a 16 year old have a heart attack? We answered this question at the beginning, but I wanted to add something. Chances of developing a heart attack increase with heart. But that doesn’t mean children are excluded. Heart attack can happen to anyone, be it a teen or an adult. So, if you feel a sign of this condition, try to visit a doctor for proper examination. Know that prevention is better than cure. And if you have kids who always complain of chain pain and other related conditions, ensure you take drastic measures.