By: on In Living Healthy

How will a heart attack affect me?

Although it may seem as though a heart attack is the end of the world, the truth is that many people who suffer a heart attack go on to live long, active lives. The most important thing to remember is that your lifestyle has a massive impact on your health; perhaps even more so than genetics. If you have a heart attack, there are things you should do, and things you shouldn’t do, but there are very few things that you can’t do. A heart attack does not mean your life is over.

On the contrary, it means you’ve been given another chance at leading a happy, healthy life.

The first few months following a heart attack can be the most difficult. Oftentimes people will experience long periods of depression or anxiety. One of the most important things to remember is that this is a common occurrence; you are not alone. It is normal to feel overwhelmed by the changes you will have to make. It is also normal to find yourself worrying about your health and the possibility of another heart attack. The most important thing you can do is talk to people. Talk to your friends and family. Talk to your doctors.

Join a support group. The last is especially helpful as the other members of the group will have feelings similar to your own and may help you to realize that this will pass. If, after some time has passed, you find you are not feeling better, talk to your doctor. There are various treatments and medications available for those suffering from depression.

One of the biggest questions for someone recovering from a heart attack is when they can safely resume daily activities such as exercise and sex. For most, it is a matter of weeks before they can return to these activities. It is important to speak with your doctor before resuming normal activities. During this conversation, it is imperative that you answer your doctor’s questions honestly. If you minimize your symptoms in order to get approval, it may be that you are not quite ready to go back to your routine.

Remember that this waiting period is very temporary. Be patient and give yourself time to heal.

While most people are able to go back to their daily activities fairly quickly, it is important to remember that some activities are best left behind. Certain activities, such as drinking alcohol, are best done in moderation. Others, like smoking cigarettes, are best to stop entirely. The fact is that after having a heart attack, you are at an increased risk for a second heart attack.
Being careful not to overexert yourself is very important, especially in the first few months following your heart attack. Those sections of the heart that were deprived of oxygen during your heart attack are weaker than the rest of your heart. Tissue death is irreversible and those sections will never work as well as they should. Angina is often reported in people that have survived a heart attack. Chest pain caused by Angina can sometimes occur after physical activity or overexertion. It is important to know the difference between chest pain or discomfort caused by Angina, and that caused by a heart attack. If you are unsure, however, it is always best to seek medical attention rather than ignore symptoms.