Acid reflux is something that many people struggle with on a daily basis. There are great medications out there that can help stop excess stomach acid production. When this happens, the affected tissues in the body have a chance to heal. However, over the long term, it might be something that never really goes away, and someone with GERD might fight with it for the rest of their life. There are even times when the acid reflux symtoms mimic that of a heart attack, and it can be hard at times to tell the difference. This can mean quite a few scary moments for those with GERD.
Most commonly, the biggest symptom of acid reflux is the pain in the esophagus. This pain might feel like it is coming from the same area where the heart is located. This pain can be rather mild at first, but for some people, it can be very strong. It might also be accompanied by a feeling of pressure in the area, and that pain and pressure might radiate around to the back. Some with GERD also experience breathing problems.
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These problems may not appear all at once, but there may be moments when they all occur together and can leave a person feeling like they are experiencing something more than heartburn.
The symptoms of a heart attack are closely related to those of GERD. They are not the same in physiology, but they can feel the same. This is a problem for older people who may think they are having warning signs for a heart attack. They may also have no idea that they have acid reflux.
The true symptoms of a heart attack are:
o Chest pain that spreads to the shoulders, neck or arms
o Discomfort or pressure in the center of the chest that lasts for longer than a few minutes
o Problems breathing, shortness of breath, feeling nauseous and breaking into a cold sweat.
o Losing the color from your face
o Rapid or irregular heartbeat.
Comparing the symptoms of acid reflux to those of a heart attack, it is easy to see why so many people get confused.
The problem is that even though acid reflux is mildly serious and needs to be treated, it is not usually an emergency situation. Heart attack, on the other hand, should be treated immediately or death is very possible.
The four major symptoms of pain in chest, radiating pressure or discomfort, breathing problems, and nausea are on top of the list for both. So how does a person know what is going on and if they should call for emergency help or not?
They don’t. This is why it is essential to call for help, even if you are not sure which is going on. It might be acid reflux symtoms, but it may indeed be a heart attack. One should never take the chance of guessing which one they think it is. Always call for help when a heart attack is suspected, even if a person has a history of acid reflux problems and pain. Though you might feel foolish when it turns out to be reflux rather than a real heart attack, it is never wise to guess and take a chance with something that might be this serious. Err on the side of caution.