What is Atrial Fibrillation?

Senior Care in China Grove NC

Adults over the age of 60, particularly men, have an increased risk of atrial fibrillation.  Atrial fibrillation is a type of irregular heartbeat which causes the upper parts of the heart, or the atria, toSenior-Care-China-Grove-NC quiver or fibrillate.  Since this disrupts the normal rhythm of the heart, blood can pool in the atria and form clots.  Atrial fibrillation can potentially lead to heart failure or stroke.  It is important for seniors to be aware of this condition and to look out for any possible symptoms, since the complications of atrial fibrillation can be very serious.  Read on for some useful information about this dangerous, but common, condition.

What are the causes of atrial fibrillation?

Atrial fibrillation can be caused by other heart problems such as heart valve disease, heart failure, heart attack, or coronary artery disease.  It can also be caused by high blood pressure.  Heavy alcohol use over a long period of time can also be a cause of atrial fibrillation.

What are the symptoms of atrial fibrillation?

Sometimes atrial fibrillation is discovered at routine doctor’s visits.  This is because it doesn’t always have symptoms and those who have it may not know it.  When symptoms are present they may include dizziness, chest pain, fainting, tiredness, feeling out of breath, and feeling like the heart isn’t beating steadily or is fluttering, racing, or pounding.  If these symptoms are present, seniors should seek medical care as soon as possible.

Can atrial fibrillation be treated?

Yes.  Atrial fibrillation can be treated with medications or by ablation.  Treating atrial fibrillation promptly and properly is essential for preventing heart failure and strokes.

How is atrial fibrillation managed?

In addition to using the medications prescribed by a doctor, there are many lifestyle changes seniors can make to improve their heart health and their health overall.  First, seniors should avoid smoking, drinking, and exposure to second-hand smoke.  They should also stay active and strive to exercise daily (when it is doctor approved).  It is important for seniors to manage high blood pressure, too, by reducing stress, lowering high cholesterol, and eating a balanced diet filled with heart-healthy foods.  Some foods that have heart-health benefits include beans, fish, whole grains, fruits and vegetables, and olive oil.

If you suspect that you may be suffering from atrial fibrillation, it is important to seek medical care right away to prevent any dangerous complications.  Atrial fibrillation is common but it can have many health consequences if it is not treated and managed properly.

If you or an aging loved one are considering senior care in China Grove, NC, contact the caring professionals at TenderHearted Home Care today. Call us at (704) 612-4132.

Source: http://www.webmd.com/heart-disease/atrial-fibrillation/atrial-fibrillation-overview

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