Cardiovascular disease is the top cause of death in the United States.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the range of conditions known collectively as cardiovascular disease is responsible for 1 in 4 deaths every single year. Elderly Americans are at particularly high risk of dying from cardiovascular-related diseases or their long-term effects. Seniors who are suffering from cardiovascular conditions, including those that have survived a stroke or who are living with congestive heart failure, may have difficulty conducting everyday tasks on their own. In fact, many seniors will rely on in-home care to provide attentive company, aid with everyday tasks, and assistance taking medications and following other physician instructions.
If you’re concerned about the health and wellness of a senior loved one, you may be interested in learning about the most effective cardiovascular disease treatment and prevention methods. Continue reading to learn more and find out how in-home caregivers can help the senior in your life.
About Cardiovascular Disease
Cardiovascular disease refers to a family of diseases that involve the body’s cardiovascular system, including the heart, veins, and arteries. Common conditions include coronary artery disease, arrhythmias, heart defects, and heart valve disorders.
Two of the most common and deadly cardiovascular diseases are heart attack and stroke. A heart attack is the death of heart tissue due to an artery blood clot that deprives heart tissue of vital blood supply. Stroke is a similar condition caused by a clot that starves brain tissue of its blood supply.
Treatments for cardiovascular disease depend on the specific condition from which an individual suffers. They may include lifestyle changes, surgery, and/or medications. Lifestyle changes, such as following a healthy diet, have been shown to drastically improve cardiovascular health.
There are many types of surgery that can treat cardiovascular disease, including coronary stents to open blocked blood vessels, pacemaker implants to correct heart rhythm conditions, and even coronary artery bypass surgery to improve blood flow to the heart after a heart attack.
There are also many proven effective medications used to treat heart disease, including anticoagulants to prevent blood clots and ACE inhibitors to relax blood vessels and improve healthy blood flow. The specific medication a person needs will depend on their exact cardiovascular condition and the degree of disease they may have.
There are also holistic treatment options for cardiovascular disease. Supplementing your diet with omega-3 fatty acids can reduce inflammation and improve cardiovascular health. Holistic approaches to stress reduction, such as meditative exercises, may also be effective. Chelation treatments claim to reduce the buildup of heavy metals, including mercury, in the body that may negatively impact cardiovascular health. However, holistic treatment options shouldn’t be used as a substitute for medical intervention, especially for more serious cardiovascular diseases.
If you’re wondering how to prevent cardiovascular disease, start with meaningful changes to your lifestyle. Almost no other diseases are so dependent on lifestyle habits as cardiovascular diseases. Avoid high-stress situations as much as possible and consider talking to a therapist if anger, depression, or anxiety is affecting your daily life. Quit smoking and limit your alcohol consumption.
For the greatest impact, incorporate diet and exercise into your lifestyle. Ask a doctor for fitness recommendations and try performing low-impact exercises, such as walking and yoga, if possible. Eat a high-fiber, high-produce diet and limit your intake of sodium, saturated fats, and simple carbohydrates. Planning heart-healthy meals and assisting with basic exercise are some of the most valuable services a home caregiver can offer seniors.
Physicians tend to focus on lowering blood pressure and cholesterol levels to reduce one’s risk of a heart attack or stroke. High blood pressure and cholesterol are some of the top causes of blood vessel blockage responsible for heart attacks and strokes. Doctors may recommend specific surgeries or medications to reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease. For example, many doctors prescribe beta blockers, a class of medications that block the effects of stress hormones, such as adrenaline, on the cardiovascular system. Diuretic pills, meanwhile, can help the body flush out high levels of sodium, a chemical that can sharply raise blood pressure and cause heart diseases like atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries).
If you have a senior loved one that has been placed on a diet and medication plan to recover from or reduce their risk of cardiovascular disease, you should consider hiring an in-home caregiver to help them follow their doctor’s recommendations. 24 Hour Home Care’s qualified, experienced, and highly reputable caregivers can help seniors stay healthy, provide company, and offer assistance with in-home tasks. Call us today to learn how we can help the senior in your life.