Chest pain can have a significant impact on your quality of life. The constant fear of another episode of chest pain can lead to anxiety and depression, which can further affect your overall well-being. The pain can be intense and disrupt sleep, leading to fatigue and decreased energy levels. You may have to make lifestyle changes, such as avoiding certain foods, to improve your symptoms, which can also dull your life. Several factors can lead to chest pain Villa Rica, and each requires a unique management approach.
- Heart attack
A heart attack is a life-threatening medical condition due to a blockage in the blood flow to your heart muscle. This blockage can cause chest pain, which can be crushing, tight, or heavy. The pain may spread to your arms, neck, jaw, back, or stomach. Other signs of a heart attack may include shortness of breath, sweating, lightheadedness, and a rapid or irregular heartbeat. Prompt treatment can reduce the damage to your heart muscle and improve the outcome.
Pericarditis is when the sac surrounding your heart, called the pericardium, becomes inflamed. This inflammation can cause sharp, stabbing, or pressure-like pain in your chest area. You may experience it in the center or left of your chest, which can sometimes radiate to the neck, shoulder, or back. It may worsen when you breathe deeply, lie down, or cough. Pericarditis can be due to a viral infection, autoimmune disease, injury to the heart, or as a side effect of certain medications.
- Coronary artery disease
Coronary artery disease (CAD) is when the arteries that transport blood to your heart muscle narrow reducing the flow of oxygen-rich blood to the heart. This blockage can lead to angina. CAD is often due to the buildup of fatty deposits in your coronary arteries, a condition known as atherosclerosis. Other risk factors for CAD include high blood pressure, high cholesterol, smoking, obesity, lack of physical activity, and a family history of heart disease.
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease
Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) is a disorder in which the contents of your stomach, including acid, move back into the esophagus, resulting in irritation and inflammation of the esophageal lining. This disorder can lead to a burning sensation in your chest, commonly referred to as heartburn. In some cases, GERD can cause severe chest pain that can last for several minutes and be accompanied by other symptoms like a sour taste in the mouth, a sore throat, or coughing.
- Panic attack
During a panic attack, you may develop a sudden and intense fear or terror, along with symptoms like chest pain, rapid heartbeat, sweating, shaking, and difficulty breathing. Chest pain from a panic attack usually manifests as a tight or crushing sensation that you may mistake for a heart attack. The pain is usually not related to any physical heart problem but rather increased blood flow, rapid heartbeat, and tension in the chest muscles.
If you experience chest pain that doesn’t respond to painkillers, call the Peachstate Advanced Cardiac and Endovascular (PACE) office or book your spot online for diagnosis and treatment.