Do you feel a tightness or squeezing sensation in your chest? Or regularly experience a burning sensation in your chest region?
One thing is sure- it is not normal. It could be a possible sign of the condition known as angina. Most times, people make the mistake of taking angina as just mere chest pain. There is much more to angina pain. Here, you will discover what angina is, angina symptoms and angina causes, as well as the lifestyle changes you can employ for treatment and prevention.
What is angina?
Angina is a chest pain that occurs when insufficient blood goes to a part of the heart. Angina pain usually feels like a heart attack, coupled with squeezing or pressure in the chest. Angina is also called ischemic chest pain or angina pectoris.
The condition is a symptom of heart disease. This is because you experience angina when something blocks the arteries or when there is not enough blood flow to the arteries.
Although angina pain typically goes away quickly, it might be a symptom of a life-threatening heart problem. For this reason, it is vital to start talking to a doctor and make lifestyle changes to avoid a heart attack.
Angina symptoms: Things to look out for
Although chest pain is the primary symptom, angina symptoms vary. You may have:
- Feeling of fullness in your chest
- Feeling of pressure or heaviness in the chest region
- Stomach ache or vomiting
- Shortness of breath
You may also have pain in your breastbone, arms, shoulders, jaw, neck, throat, or back.
How is angina pain treated?
There are several treatment options for angina. Several medications can be prescribed for angina to relieve flare-ups. These medications include nitrates, beta-blockers, ACE inhibitors, statins, calcium channel blockers, and clot-preventing drugs.
Lifestyle changes for treatment and prevention of angina
Adopting lifestyle changes can help reduce angina symptoms. Here’s a list of lifestyle changes to get you started:
Create a healthy diet
To prevent angina, work towards creating a healthy diet. Your diet should contain little or no amount of trans fat, sugar, salt and saturated fat. Throw in fruits and vegetables; whole grains such as oatmeal, brown rice, pasta, whole-wheat bread; low-fat milk and yogurt.
Avoid large meals
Eating foods in large quantities can heighten your angina symptoms and cause discomfort to your chest. Consuming foods like beans can leave you full and cause heartburn. Large meals can also make your chest region feel super heavy and pressurized.
Exercise regularly, but take breaks if necessary
Lack of activity can also increase your symptoms. To solve this, speak with a doctor on a great exercise plan for your health. You can also start with brisk walking, skipping, jogging, and cycling. However, it is important to note that sometimes angina symptoms can occur when you push yourself up to the point of exertion. Do well to go slow and take breaks.
Maintain a healthy weight
Lose weight if you are overweight. This can only happen with the right balance of healthy eating and the level of exercise you engage in. Your weight plays an important role in the occurrence and nonoccurrence of angina symptoms.
Quit smoking and reduce alcohol intake
Smokers and those who use marijuana are at high risk of developing angina. Do well to quit smoking if you notice symptoms or want to improve. Taking alcohol in excess can also increase your risk of developing heart-related conditions, thereby spiking your chances of having angina.
Treat high blood pressure, diabetes, and underlying medical conditions
Health conditions such as high blood sugar, high blood pressure, and diabetes can increase your risk of angina. Ensure that you get treated to reduce your risk.
If you notice that you have recurring chest pain or feel pressure in your chest region, do well to speak to a doctor on Doctall for proper diagnosis and treatment.