Heart attack: early warning signs
About six weeks ago my mum mentioned that she had bad indigestion. I didn't immediately think 'heart attack' because people tend to get indigestion, but I remembered reading something about early warning signs of heart attacks in women, and that one of them is indigestion.
I didn't really think much of it, especially since her indigestion gets better with gaviscon, and since she has changed her diet recently (like not eating bread very often, so when she eats in now she gets indigestion) it makes sense.
Since then she has been OK, just indigestion now and again. However, in the last week, she has been tired in the day and has been saying she isn't sleeping well at night. She has never been a great sleeper, but she says she keeps waking up in the night, and then going back to sleep, and then waking up again, and going back to sleep etc. Remembering the early warning signs of a heart attack again got me worried, since they list fatigue (which she has), disturbed sleep (which she has), indigestion (which she has), unexplained anxiety (which she has had for years so it is explained) and pain in the chest (which she doesn't have). She has also had pains in her legs in the last few days.
The thing is, when should you stop thinking that these things are just normal, unconnected things, and when do you start thinking they might be a precursor to a heart attack? It's the thing regarding cause and effect, how is one to know that fatigue is caused by bad sleeping and medication, and indigestion caused by changed diet, as opposed to the possibility of having a heart attack? Are these websites that describe early warning signs talking about really sudden onset symptoms, like feeling fine one day and then all of a sudden feeling tired as hell? Because they make it sound like if you are fatigued, not sleeping well and getting indigestion then you are heading for a heart attack.
Sorry for going on, i'm just having a mental battle with myself, with one side of my brain saying 'this sounds like a heart attack is going to happen' and the other side saying 'they are standard, unconnected issues that can be explained by other factors'. It is also hard to talk to her about it, because i don't really want to worry her silly by going up to her and saying 'I think you have the early warning symptoms of a heart attack'. I have said she looks tired and she insists she feels fine and that there is nothing wrong with her.