Strong pain in the chest, unexpected sweating, uneven breathing – these can all be symptoms of a panic attack. They can also be indications of a heart attack. In the event that you or one of your family members experiences these symptoms, it’s vital to be able to distinguish between the two.

Here’s how to tell the difference between a heart attack and a panic attack:

A Heart Attack – Main Symptom Is Compressing Pain

  • Those who are experiencing a heart attack define chest pain as constricting.
  • As a rule of thumb, the pain appears in the centre of the chest. It can move down along the left arm and along the back.
  • Agony from a heart attack can also spread to the neck, teeth and jaw area.
  • The strength of heart attack pain can change.
  • Pain from a heart attack lasts for more than five minutes. It doesn’t characteristically affect a person’s breathing.
  • An individual who is experiencing a heart attack may feel a prickly feeling, which is normally restricted to the left arm in most cases. This is often accompanied by a cold, sticky sweat, along with feelings of biliousness and throwing up.
  • At the peak of a heart attack, an individual may experience a fear which is focussed on the constrictive pain in their chest. They become afraid they might die.
  • Heart attack patients may experience accelerated breathing when fear from the heart attack incites a panic attack.
  • If you, a family member or a friend experience these symptoms for more than five minutes, call an ambulance. Get to the nearest hospital as soon as possible.