Distinguish Between a Heart Attack And a Panic Attack

Panic attacks and heart attacks have quite similar symptoms and it is crucial to know which is happening so as to give the best care and reaction. Truth is both can start off in the same manner: strong chest pain, prickly feeling, uneven breathing and nausea.
Read on and learn how to distinguish them.

Heart attack.

The pain felt during a heart attack is described as constricting and appears in the center of the chest or, more commonly along the left arm and the back.

The pain can also affect the neck, teeth and jaw areas and its intensity can change with every minute. If the pain continues after 5 minutes and the person experiences quickened breathing it is time to call an ambulance and seek medical care as soon as possible.

Panic attack.

The misconception about panic attacks is that they are the result of intense situations and happen in special circumstances. Truth is, panic attacks can occur in the most ordinary circumstances.

The peak for a panic attack is felt about 10 minutes after its beginning. The pain is concentrated mostly in the region of the chest, but can be felt in the right arm, legs as well as fingers, and has an undulating character, rising and falling with no explanation.

People experience irrational fears such as suffocating or going insane during the time of a panic attack.


It is vital to identify the kind of attack one is experiencing because in the case of a heart attack, in the absence of medical treatment, the symptoms may get worse and even lead to death.

Panic attacks require time as well as a doctor’s consult that could give a treatment and advice on how to improve life quality as well as life expectancy.

Don’t ignore any signs that your body is trying to communicate via pain and symptoms.