Finding solutions managing atrial fibrillation
We all know that shortness of breath, dizziness and difficulty breathing is just a small part of this disease. It’s a big deal! Sometimes the heart rate can be considerably higher than 100 beats per minute. I’d like to share some positive and helpful information with you about how diet plays a huge roll in A-Fib, as well as helping you discover the best exercise for all of you A-Fib patients.
I’ve found that any cardio exercise is a good thing (I use a rowing machine). Yoga works your whole body, starting out easy with gentle yoga and you can increase your workouts as you go. Living with A-Fib everyday is different and so are the outcomes of how you deal with it. I’m talking about diet and exercise; it has to be factored into your life when you have this disease.
I am one of those A-Fibbers! I’ve had Atrial Fibrillation for many years, now that I’m almost 64 years old I fall into a higher risk of stroke category, 5 times greater to be exact. I’ve done a lot of research on Atrial Fibrillation and a lot of information about it is really scary. More than 454,000 hospitalizations with A-Fib as the primary diagnosis happens each year in the United States. The condition contributes to about 158,000 deaths each year.
Controlled breathing and Atrial Fibrillation
When you’re in A-Fib you can use focused and low breathing techniques. Controlling your breathing can relax the heart and bring it back to a normal heartbeat. Everyone has a ” Happy Place,” right? I usually visualize that I’m at the ocean, it soothes my soul, I smell the salty air, feel the wind blowing on my face and I just breath as all my worries vanish. Before you know it, your heart is back in rhythm. I’m so grateful every day when I’m not in A-Fib, I seize the moments and thank my lucky stars.
Yoga, meditation and mild Exercise
These are some ways to decrease stress. This is a huge trigger for A-Fib! Avoiding obvious, known triggers is a smart coping strategy. From my experience with triggers, stress was the highest culprit on the list. I was lucky enough to be able to retire from a high stress job. I worked with the public, so it wasn’t easy to hide episodes of A-Fib.
I left work several times in an ambulance and other times my daughter drove me to the nearest hospital. Since I left work, I haven’t been to the hospital once, and that was 2 years ago (There was my sign). So, yoga helped me be at the moment and breathe. The stretching helped with stresses of the day that caused aches and pain in my body. I bought an exercise rower machine because it’s easier on my body at my age and it’s really soothing.
Exercise doesn’t have to be painful, just as long as you get the cardiovascular muscles going in a workout. It’s all about breathing!
Healthy diet along with regular physical activity can relieve stress. Relaxation techniques such as Deep breathing, aromatherapy, music, massage and a positive attitude goes along way. I listen to Soundscapes to fall asleep by, usually of the ocean with the seagulls talking in the background and sometimes a river. Soundscapes are a good escape, an acoustic virtual emotional environment. Getting a daily regimen helps and I’m talking about yoga! If you haven’t tried it, I’m telling you, you’re missing out, it’s a great way to just get out of the house and do something for you.
Soundscapes are audio environments made up of individual sounds that reflect different feedback centers including brain activity, heart rate, breath and movement within a sleep journey.
Take the day off of work, practice some mindful yoga, grab a book you’d like to read but never had the time. Go to the beach and have a glass of wine. Go for a walk in the park or a quiet trail. Take a bubble bath with candlelight and a glass of wine with your favorite music, that’s my favorite thing to do. Rest is good too, take a nap, or you could go ride a horse or watch your favorite TV show or order dinner in and watch a movie. Play the stocks or play candy crush, just take a day for you!
It’s your day and it’s all about you…so just breathe.
I hope I gave you some ideas to cope with Atrial Fibrillation. It never leaves the mind and seems to always be lurking but, in the meantime, let’s take care of ourselves.
Thank you for gracing me with your presence. If you have any questions or want to leave a comment below, feel free, I’d like to hear from you. How are you coping?
Wishing you the Best, Sherry