Living with Chronic Heart Failure (HF)
In addition to taking all the medicines you've been prescribed, there are several lifestyle changes your doctor may ask you to make which can help your treatment.
THESE 4 LIFESTYLE CHANGES CAN MAKE A BIG DIFFERENCE IN MANAGING YOUR CHRONIC HEART FAILURE:
Get more exercise Adding movement can help you lose weight and boost your health.
Eat healthier foods Choose more vegetables, fruit, and lean meat. Choose less fat, cholesterol, and processed foods.
Cut back on salt (sodium) Having too much sodium can make chronic heart failure worse with swelling from fluid in various parts of your body. This can cause the heart to work harder.
Quit smoking and cut back on alcohol Losing these habits can have a positive impact on heart health.
Always get a doctor's OK before making any lifestyle change.
Follow your doctor or nurse's specific advice for you.
Keep track of your Chronic HF symptoms
Make a note whenever you feel these symptoms:
- Chest pain
- Bad wheezing and/or coughing
- Appetite changes
- Labored, difficult breathing
Track the 3 P's
- Get on the scale every morning and write down your weight. If you've gained a lot from day to day, you may be retaining water from eating too many salty foods or drinking too many fluids.
- Use a home blood pressure monitor and write down your results as instructed by your doctor.
- When you're completely at rest, check your 60-second heart rate. Count your heartbeat for 6 seconds and multiply by 10. Check it as often as your doctor tells you.
If you feel these symptoms, go to the emergency room or call 911:
- Extra-fast heartbeat
- Extreme shortness of breath
- Uncommon chest pain