Coming to terms with atrial fibrillation – Treatment that helps you live with it

Atrial fibrillation, abbreviated as AF or A-fib is a heart condition which makes your heart beat in an irregular way, sometimes in a too rapid manner which leads to poor circulation of blood and other cardiovascular issues. Majority are unaware of the fact that they have atrial fibrillation and they don’t feel any symptoms at all and there are some others who have symptoms which make them feel scary, pounding heart or a strange feeling in the heart which is as if the heart is ‘going to explode’.

As per a new study, it is seen that atrial fibrillation is more common among women and it also affects adults who are in between the age of 45 and 60. This is also a main cause of all sorts of coronary heart diseases. More than 200,000 cases of atrial fibrillation are reported every year in America and around 35 million suffer from AF throughout the world.

Determining the right treatment for Afib

Irregular heartbeat means blood doesn’t flow as perfectly as it should and due to this clots might form inside your heart. If one such blood clot travels to your brain, this can cause a stroke. Your doctor will recommend medications but the type of treatment entirely depends on your symptoms, age and how long you’ve been suffering from afib. If you’re concerned about how can afib be treated, here are some ways of determining the right treatment.

  • Blood thinners: In order to assist in lowering the chances of clots, your health care provider must prescribe a blood thinner which is an anticoagulant, particularly when you have high blood pressure, heart failure or diabetes. The most common one is Coumadin or warfarin. This reduces your risk of stroke but you got to get your blood tested often and also be careful about your injuries and cuts.
  • Slow your racing heart: When your heart starts beating too fast, there are medicines which slow it down and also reduce the strain on the muscles of your heart. The key is to get the heart rate below 100 beats per minute as this will soon make you feel stronger. In order to do so, doctors prescribe calcium-channel blockers or beta-blockers, as per the condition of your health.
  • Reset the irregular rhythm of your heart: There are some people suffering from Afib who require electrical cardioversion to mend the rhythm of their heart. When you’re given mild anesthesia, your doctor might use paddles to give a gentle shock to your heart. He may wish to see through an ultrasound the clots in your heart. In case you have one, you have to take blood thinners for few weeks to go through this procedure.

Apart from the above mentioned ways of treating afib, the doctors can also opt for a pacemaker which is a battery-powered device which goes under the skin of your collarbone. The wires attached to your heart keeps your heart going when it gets extremely slow. So, whenever you are affected with afib, you should immediately seek medical attention to avoid any drastic impact.