Managing Stress Techniques
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Occasional Sharp Pain In Chest While Breathing

Elvin is a 23 years old young man who is tackling 2 part-time jobs while studying for a degree course. He is a non-smoker and a non-drinker. In late July last year, Elvin started to get a sharp pain in the left side of his chest just below his rib cage. The pain would be constant and get even more painful with each breath. The sharp pain would make Elvin very hard to breathe as each breath makes the pain even sharper and more intense. Any attempt to try to take a full breath is futile as the pain would literally stop him from completing the breath and he would feel a sharp pain if he tries to breath in. It is a piercing pain and all Elvin feels like is to take a deep breathe to get his breathe back. It takes a couple of minutes for the sharp pain in the chest to completely stop. Elvin then regain to normal breathing. Elvin simply takes a few deep breathes to get my breathe back.

Usually, the sharp pain in his chest will go away shortly and will not return for a couple of months. Approximately, Elvin will experience such occasional sharp pain in the chest once every 3 months. However, recently, his chest pain is getting more frequent and it is affecting both his work and well-being. Ultimately, Elvin decided to visit his family doctor for a check up. The physician's assistant on duty had an ECG scan on Elvin and it turned out to be normal. Elvin also had a chest x-ray done that the doctor said was normal.

Elvin was then told that he was probably "stressed out" and was given the clear and told to take some aspirin. The doctor also gave Elvin 2 Days MCs for him to stay at home to rest. The doctor advised Elvin to take things easy and learn to relax more.

Elvin's ECG scan and chest x-ray turned out to be very normal and the doctor diagnosed Elvin as having too much stress which caused tension in his chest to build up and lead to muscle cramp in his rib cage. This could be the reason behind Elvin's sharp pain in the chest.

Having sharp chest pain is one of the most terrible and frightening symptoms a person ca have. It is sometimes very difficult even for a medical doctor to tell what is the real causes behind the chest pain and whether it is life-threatening. Chest pain has numerous possible causes and all of which need medical attention. Basically, the causes of chest pain can be grouped into 2 major categories - Cardiac & Non-Cardiac causes.

Cardiac Causes:
There are a few cardiac causes of chest pain, but we will only mention the two major ones here.

Heart Attack - Chest pain could be an indicator of a heart attack. A heart attack is the result of a blood clot that is interfering with the blood flow to your heart muscle.

Angina - Angina is the restriction of blood flow to your heart. Atherosclerotic plagues can build up in your arteries which carry blood to your heart. It can narrow them and temporarily stop blood flow to your heart, especially when you exert yourself too hard. Recurrent episodes of chest pain is usually caused by restricted blood flow to your heart.

Non-Cardiac Causes:

There are a few non-cardiac causes of chest pain, but we will only mention the two major ones here.

Heartburn - Chest pain can be caused by heart burn. Stomach acid that is being washed up from your stomach to your esophagus can cause heartburn, which is a burning sensation behind your breastbone.

Panic Attack - Another very common causes of chest pain is Panic Attack or Anxiety Attack. If you often experience times when you have intense fear which is accompanied by chest pain, fast heart rate, rapid breathing, not enough breath and profuse perspiration, you could be experiencing a Panic Attack which is a form of anxiety problem.

Hence, I would recommend everyone to try and lead a stress-free lifestyle and learn to relax more frequently everyday. Take effort in listening to soothing and relaxation music, do some yoga and read a good book. Have a healthy diet, sleep well and exercise regularly. Most importantly, always adopt a positive mind and learn to let go and take things easily.

Nevertheless, not everyone will be like Elvin who have chest pain due to job stress and other stresses of life. Chest pain has many causes and it could be due to a medical problem. If you are experiencing severe pain, squeezing, or pressure in your chest that lasts for more than a few minutes, or if the pain moves other parts of your body like your neck, left shoulder, arm, or jaw, I would strongly advise you to go immediately to a hospital emergency department. It could be due to stress or it could be due to a heart problem or lung'll never really know what it is...hence it is important for you to seek medical help immediately as the medical doctors are better able to diagnose what is the problem with your sharp pain.

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Useful Information


Stress Management Tips - How To Manage Stress?

Stress Relief Techniques

Dealing with Job Stress

Dealing with Relationship Stress

Preventing Burnout

Causes Of Chest Pain - Chest Pain Stress

Don't Let Stress Wear You Out

Cures For Insomnia - Ways To Fall Asleep

Effects Of Stress On The Body

Symptoms Of Stress

Ways To Manage Stress

Occasional Sharp Pain In Chest While Breathing

How To Cope With Work Pressure And The Office Environment