Aspirin & Heart Attacks

Today is Monday the 15th January 2018, you woke up around 7.00am, you had your jam on toast like you do every morning and headed up upstairs to get clothed for work. However today, you struggle a little bit, it takes you a while longer than normal, a slight feeling of breathlessness and feeling of tightness around your chest and arm, you feel sick and have a weird sense of feeling thirsty. You sit on the side of your bed, but it’s getting worse, its spreading to your neck and jaw. You feel awful, what’s happening to you? Any guesses?

You may have said a ‘Heart Attack’. If you did, well done! Now what? What would you have done next, what could you have done? Do you just wait, call an ambulance, see if the pain passes or take an Aspirin? Let this article give you a little helping hand, not only to help yourself, but others around you, inside and outside of the home. With statistics from HeartUK showing that someone has a heart attack every 7 minutes in the UK, you are extremely likely to come across one in your lifetime.


What Is A Heart Attack?

A heart attack, or as the professionals call it, a ‘myocardial infraction’ is often caused by a blockage in the artery of the heart. Small bits of broken cholesterol break off and block blood flow to the heart, creating a heart attack. Now we know what it is in extremely simple terms and have mentioned some (but not all) of the signs and symptoms above. What can we do to help our selves and those potential further casualties we may have to help?

Firstly, call 999! Get help immediately even if you only suspect it, the ambulance service would rather arrive and find you safe and well, than arrive to late. A Heart attack I a dynamic event and being equally dynamic with your first aid treatment could help save a life. This article wants to focus on the potential less known use of ‘Aspirin’ when suffering from a heart attack.


Administering Aspirin…?

When a blockage is caused in the heart, this send a signal to the body that it is in need. When in need, the area will attract platelets, platelets are cells that trigger blood clotting, just like when you cut your finger. They are there to help you, however in a narrow artery that is already blocked, it continues to increase the blockage to the area and deprives the heart of vital oxygen.

‘Immediate’ aspirin has been shown to significantly reduce deaths from heart attack, and the earlier it is taken during a heart attack, the greater the benefit.’ A small dose of aspirin, a single adult tablet of 300mg will constrain all the platelets in the bloodstream helping delay the onset of a full-blown life-threatening heart attack. Put simply, the aspirin helps thin the blood slightly, allowing it to pass the blockage. This is something that you can do for yourself but also to assist someone else. Within the article you will see some example of aspirin storage pods that you can keep with you always.  Of course, this does not replace the need for a basic life support course, but it may give you some extra vital minutes to get professional help.

How is best used? There has been some research regarding either swallowing or chewing. The Harvard medical school did a study and discovered the fastest way to help is by asking your casualty to chew it. Now if they are unable due to stiffness or pain, then pop it in their mouth just under the tongue and let it dissolve there. You MUST always ensure that they are not allergic to it or have been informed by a doctor that they are unable to take it. You may be thinking ‘what if its not a heart attack’. It is a good question, but we don’t want you to worry, this is lots of evidence that taking aspirin daily could be a benefit to your heart, but we must have a little disclaimer here that we are saying this should be done, however there would be little risk giving aspirin to a casualty if you suspect a heart attack that turned out not to be so (unless they were allergic).


Look at the pictures and consider purchasing a pod, what better thing can you have on your key rings or in your bag, apart from that fancy car. Do something amazing today and invest in life.


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