There are many things that we do without realizing that any of them can lead to or trigger a sudden heart attack. Here are a few of the triggers that are to be watched for.
Lack of sleep
Lack of sleep will make you grumpy and tired on a regular basis but it can also raise the risk of a heart attack. In a study researchers found that people who usually slept fewer than 6 hours a night were twice as likely to get a heart attack as those who slept 6 to 8 hours. The reason is not clear but losing sleep can raise the blood pressure and lead to inflammation, neither of which is good for the heart.
People who have migraine headaches are observed to have a heart attack later in their life than those who have no headaches. Headaches that include auras, strange sights, sounds or feelings before the actual pain starts seem to be at more risk.
Severe chillness can shock the system. When you step out in cold winter months it can cause the arteries to narrow, making it harder for blood to reach the heart. Above this the heart has to work harder to keep the body warm. All these together along with any hard work you do could exert more strain on the heart and trigger a heart attack.
Heart attack is seen to occur when air pollution levels are well above normal. When breathe polluted air on a regular basis the arteries get clogged and this will lead to disruption of blood supply to the heart. Sitting in traffic is dangerous, since it not only subjects you to breathing in vehicle exhaust fumes but creates stress, both of which are harmful to the heart.
A heavy meal
It is better to think twice before a second or third helping, it can hurt more than a broader waistline. When you consume large amounts of food in one sitting, it leads to higher levels of stress hormones norepinephrine in the body. This raises the blood pressure and heart rate and ofcourse trigger heart attacks. Very fatty meals can cause a jump in fats in the blood and lead to damage of blood vessels which is also dangerous to the heart.
Very strong emotions
Strong emotions are a human nature but when they get out of bounds they can be harmful. Anger, grief and stress are known triggers of heart problems but even too much of joyfulness and sudden spurts of happiness can lead to a heart attack as well.
A surprise birthday party, a lottery, a birth of a grandchild are some occasions that can lead to excess of joy and trigger heart attack.
The efforts you take to get into shape is supposed to protect your heart in the long run. Sometimes doing too much of exercise could be also be dangerous to health. About 6% of heart attacks are triggered by extreme physical exertion. So exercise should be in moderation and not done when you are stressed or angry.
Apart from these asthma, flu, natural disasters, sex, sports, alcohol and coffee drinking in excess can trigger heart attack.