Learn How Cardiac Rehabilitation Improves Heart Function By Improving Heart And Overall Patient Well-Being
Our reputation as an industry leader is important to us at Pegasus Home Health Care. High-quality healthcare is the essence of who we are and what we do. Incorporating diversity, equity, and inclusivity in our hiring practices are part of maintaining our high standards.
Pegasus skilled in-home caregivers in Lancaster and elsewhere assist clients with a variety of medical conditions. Some of their patients have heart disease. Career home health care nurses understand how cardiac rehabilitation improves heart function.
Heart Disease Is More Than One Condition
The term heart disease refers to several types of cardiac conditions. Each kind has distinguishing causes, symptoms, and treatments. Many of the factors of each type can overlap the other heart conditions.
The four primary kinds of heart disease include:
- Arrhythmia: Occurs when the heart beats too fast (tachycardia), too slow (bradycardia), or irregularly. Faulty electrical signals cause arrhythmias. Atrial fibrillation is a common arrhythmia. Left untreated, it can lead to a stroke.
- Arterial: Occurs when the arteries within the heart become clogged (atherosclerosis). Your patient may describe it as hardening of the arteries. Atherosclerosis is the cause of coronary artery disease, which can cause a heart attack or stroke.
- Cardiomyopathy: Occurs when heart muscles become diseased and unable to pump blood efficiently. It is progressive, and your patient may eventually need a heart transplant.
- Congenital: Occurs as a birth defect due to issues with the structure of the heart. It’s generally diagnosed at birth or soon afterward, but mild cases may not be diagnosed until adulthood. These are usually not life-threatening for your adult patients.
- Valvular: Occurs when the heart valves are damaged, keeping blood from moving through the heart properly. It may require surgery.
It’s essential that you understand which condition your patient has. Recovery efforts, including rehabilitation, are based on the type of disease, severity, and the individual’s overall health.
Cardiac Rehabilitation Aids Recovery While Improving Heart Health
Cardiac rehabilitation is usually recommended by your patient’s physician but a patient may request it. If hospitalized for heart disease, a rehab program may already have started. Cardiac rehabilitation not only helps individuals recover, but it also helps improve heart function, which may prevent additional disease.
Although rehab is customized for each individual, it usually has three facets:
- Lifestyle changes
It’s conducted by a team of specialists and is frequently completed as an outpatient. Once the formal program is completed, individuals are often given recommendations to continue doing on their own.
Cardiac Rehab Improves Heart Function Through Exercises, Lifestyle Changes, And Counseling
Cardiac rehab begins with information about your patient’s medical history. You may need to assist your patient in ensuring that complete and accurate information is provided. Relevant testing then helps identify risk factors and establish a program.
Exercise is always performed under medical supervision. As with all rehab, it’s customized based on an individual’s level of fitness and risk factors. Exercise may be strenuous or gentle, but it’s all designed to improve both heart and overall strength.
Your patient may be encouraged to make lifestyle changes. Recommendations may include improving their diet and achieving a healthy weight. Individuals who smoke or use illicit drugs will be strongly advised to stop.
Those with other medical conditions, such as diabetes, may have to learn better ways to manage their health. For example, they might learn techniques to control factors like hypertension. Emphasis will be placed on the importance of following their physician’s instructions.
Individuals frequently receive counseling throughout their cardiac rehabilitation. Patients may be depressed at the state of their heart health. Some may become isolated.
A heart disease crisis may mean time off work for some patients, leading to financial worries. Others fear they will never have a normal life again. Receiving counseling can help keep worry and distress from hampering their recovery.
Reducing Stress Is Essential For Heart Health
Most individuals will have to learn stress-reduction techniques, whether through counseling or as a lifestyle change. Stress can adversely affect their heart rate, blood flow, and blood pressure. Their cardiac rehab teaches them how to relax, develop a positive outlook, and stay engaged with others.
Cardiac Rehabilitation Benefits
Rehab carries a slight risk of injury during exercise, reinforcing the importance of medical supervision. However, the benefits far outweigh the risk. The benefits include:
- Decreased risk of hospitalizations
- Fewer symptoms
- Increased strength
- Improved flexibility
- Lowered risk of heart attack
- More energy
- Reduced risk of dying from heart disease
Improvements in overall health and quality of life are also among the benefits for most patients.
Make Pegasus Your Professional Home
Pegasus professional in-home caregivers in Lancaster and our other locations customize their assistance to meet individual needs. They provide encouragement and support for those undergoing treatments like cardiac rehabilitation. Career home health care nurses know that patient well-being is enhanced when heart health is improved.
Pegasus is a licensed Home Care Organization and a Joint Commission Accredited Home Health Care organization. As an equal opportunity employer, we hire professional caregivers from a variety of backgrounds. Individuals receive support and training opportunities from colleagues and our staff.