Many of our patients consider themselves to be young at heart. At Your Family Medical, we encourage that mindset! We also want to equip you to enjoy your “young at heart” years for a long time. To help you with that, the senior care specialists at our disease prevention Boyd TX branch (locations also in Bedford, Benbrook, Lewisville and Justin) have put together some healthy heart tips. We hope these help you live like your age is just a number!
Know the Warning Signs
As you age, you will notice changes in the way your body responds to stress, activity and disease. Most people know that this is a natural part of aging. However, some of the responses can indicate that something more serious is going on. Some of the warning signs of heart disease that you don’t want to ignore include:
- Pain or tingling in back, jaw, neck or arm
- Shortness of breath
- Tiredness or fatigue
- Cold sweats
- Nausea and/or vomiting
- Chest pain that occurs during physical activity
- Swelling around neck, stomach, legs, feet and/or ankles
If you or someone you love is experiencing one or more of these symptoms, we recommend you schedule an appointment with a physician. When you schedule your appointment, be sure to mention the symptoms you’re experiencing along with the frequency and severity.
Learn How to Manage Your Stress
One of the top ways to prevent heart disease is through stress management. Studies have shown that chronic stress and heart disease go hand in hand. There are several effective and simple ways you can manage your stress on your own. Some of the more popular techniques include:
- Diaphragmatic breathing exercises
- Getting good sleep
Your family doctor can help if your stress becomes more than you can manage on your own. Your Family Medical’s disease prevention Boyd TX team (locations also in Bedford, Benbrook, Lewisville and Justin) can offer additional support in the form of medication, referrals to a mental health specialist and more.
Integrating regular physical activity into your week is another practical and effective way to prevent heart disease. We recommend an average of 150 minutes of activity every week. We encourage you to find creative ways to get active; not everyone loves the gym, and that’s okay! There are plenty of other ways to get your heart rate up:
- Try a dance class
- Go for a nature hike
- Play a game of 1:1 basketball with the neighbor kids
- Go for a swim or try water aerobics
If you don’t currently have an exercise routine, consult your doctor to get personalized suggestions for beginning this new heart-healthy habit.
Schedule a Physical
While we’re on the topic of consulting your doctor, let’s talk about some of the ways your he or she can help you keep your heart healthy. Whether it’s an internal medicine specialist, a geriatrician or a preventative medicine specialist or anything in between, your doctor can help you keep tabs on all the ways your heart might be needing more support. Some basic tests you can expect which will help with this include:
- Blood pressure
If you aren’t already in the habit of scheduling a regular physical, read up on the benefits of a regular checkup over at our blog today. You might be surprised how helpful it can be!
At Your Family Medical, our core belief lies in that achieving optimal outcomes for our patients requires building a mutual partnership of trust, understanding and information, with our goal being to empower them with the knowledge and skills needed to achieve an optimal state of health and well-being.