There are many different ways that a person’s heart can weaken. The most common cause of heart problems is coronary artery disease, which happens when the arteries that supply blood to the heart become narrow and blocked. This can lead to a heart attack. Other causes of a weak heart include high blood pressure, diabetes, and smoking.
The first signs of a weak heart are often found during a routine medical checkup. Your doctor may notice that your heartbeat is not as strong as it should be or that you have an irregular heartbeat. You may also have symptoms such as shortness of breath, fatigue, and chest pain. If you experience any of these symptoms, it’s important to see your doctor right away so that they can determine the cause and start you on treatment.
Shortness of breath with activity or when lying down
The first signs of a weak heart are often shortness of breath with activity or when lying down. This is because the heart is not able to pump blood efficiently and so the person experiences symptoms of congestive heart failure. Other signs include fatigue, swelling in the feet and ankles, and irregular heartbeat. If you experience any of these symptoms, it is important to see your doctor as soon as possible for a diagnosis.
Fatigue and weakness
Fatigue and weakness are two of the first signs of a weak heart. Fatigue is a feeling of tiredness that can be caused by many things, including physical activity, emotional stress, or even just not getting enough sleep. It can also be a symptom of an underlying medical condition, such as heart disease. Weakness is different from fatigue in that it is usually more general and can affect the whole body. It can be caused by a lack of nutrients or oxygen in the blood, or by an injury to the muscles. Weakness can also be a sign of heart failure, which occurs when the heart is unable to pump enough blood to meet the body’s needs.
Swelling in the legs, ankles and feet
When most people think of heart problems, they think of an issue with the organ itself – something going wrong with the muscle, valves or arteries. However, your heart is just one part of a larger system that includes your veins and lymph vessels. This system is responsible for circulating blood throughout your body and removing waste products.
If there is a problem with your heart, it can affect the entire system. One of the most common signs that something is wrong with your heart is swelling in the legs, ankles and feet. This happens because when your heart isn’t pumping blood as efficiently as it should be, blood can pool in these extremities.
Swelling in the legs, ankles and feet is often one of the first signs that something is wrong with your heart. If you notice this symptom, it’s important to see a doctor so they can determine what’s causing it and whether or not you have a more serious problem like congestive heart failure.
Rapid or irregular heartbeat
A heart that beats too fast, called tachycardia, or irregularly, called arrhythmia, is often a sign of a weak heart. A normal heartbeat is 60 to 100 beats per minute. If your heart is beating more than 100 times per minute, it’s considered tachycardia. If it’s beating less than 60 times per minute, it’s bradycardia. Arrhythmias can be caused by many things, including coronary artery disease, high blood pressure, diabetes and smoking. Treatment for a weak heart may include medications to control the heart rate or rhythm as well as lifestyle changes such as quitting smoking and exercising regularly.
Reduced ability to exercise
The first signs of a weak heart are usually a reduced ability to exercise. This can be due to the heart not pumping blood as efficiently as it once did, or because the individual has developed high blood pressure. In some cases, the person may experience chest pain or shortness of breath during physical activity. If you experience any of these symptoms, it is important to see your doctor for further evaluation.
Persistent cough or wheezing with white or pink blood-tinged mucus
Persistent cough or wheezing with white or pink blood-tinged mucus is a common symptom of several types of heart and lung conditions. It may be a sign of congestive heart failure, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), or pneumonia. In some cases, it can also be a symptom of lung cancer. If you have this symptom, it’s important to see your doctor so they can determine the cause and recommend treatment.
Swelling of the belly area (abdomen)
Fluid retention in the abdomen is a common symptom of congestive heart failure, and may be caused by the backup of blood and fluid into the abdomen. Swelling in the ankles, legs, or feet: When fluid retention occurs in the lower extremities it is called peripheral edema. This type of edema can also be caused by other conditions such as kidney disease or liver disease. Shortness of breath with exertion or at rest: Shortness of breath, also called dyspnea, is a common symptom of congestive heart failure. It occurs when fluid buildup in the lungs makes it difficult to breathe. Fatigue: Fatigue is a general feeling of tiredness that may be caused by many factors, including anemia (a decrease in red blood cells), poor nutrition, or underlying illnesses such as congestive heart failure. Heart palpitations: Heart palpitations are feelings that your heart is suddenly pounding or racing for no apparent reason. They can be caused by stress, anxiety, medications, or underlying medical conditions such as arrhythmias (abnormal heart rhythms). Dizziness: Dizziness is a common symptom that can be caused by many factors, including low blood pressure, anemia (a decrease in red blood cells), and medications. In some cases it may also be a sign of an underlying medical condition such as arrhythmias (abnormal heart rhythms).