Healthy Living Tips After Heart Surgery

If you or a loved one recently had heart surgery, you may have a new lease on life and motivation to stay healthier. Depending on the type of surgery you had, your recovery time and limitations for movement may vary, but we’ll discuss some ways to keep your heart healthy after your surgery.

Get Up and Move Around

Even though you’re likely to have limitations on lifting and standing, it’s important to get up and walk around throughout the day. Light activity and movement are essential to staying healthy and to recover more quickly.

Go for a walk around the neighborhood if the weather is nice or head to an indoor track with a friend or family member. Don’t be afraid to work up a bit of a sweat, but don’t push yourself.

Healthy Eating

If you have never been a healthy eater, adopting a heart-healthy diet may be a bit of a challenge. If you meet with a nutritionist, stick to their meal plans and recommendations. Fill your plate with lean meats and plenty of fruits and vegetables. Avoid sodium and foods with unhealthy fats.

Get A Good Night’s Sleep

Sleep is important for staying healthy and can also help you heal more quickly. While it may be difficult to sleep after your surgery, try to establish a nightly routine that helps you promote good rest.

Avoid caffeine, blue screen, and other things that prevent you from falling asleep quickly. If you think that you would benefit from a sleep aid, talk to your doctor about your options.

Practice Self-Care and Pay Attention To Your Emotional Health

It’s not uncommon to feel emotional after a heart surgery. Even though it’s common to feel a little “blue” don’t ignore your feelings, especially if they last for a few weeks.

Try to stick to a routine, visit with family and friends, and try to stay busy with hobbies. Some heart surgery patients benefit from attending support group meetings. Don’t hesitate to share your feelings with friends, family, or even a professional therapist.

Avoiding stress is also important to keep your heart healthy. Whether you have a stressful job or have other aspects of your life that cause your stress, it’s important to find healthy ways to manage your stress such as meditation or gentle stretching like yoga.

Follow The Post-Surgical Instructions

One of the most important things to do after your heart surgery is to follow any post-surgical instructions that you receive. These instructions are developed especially for individuals who are recovering from heart surgery. Failure to follow instructions could lead to complications.

As you recover, and are following post-surgical instructions, it’s important to keep track of anything that seems out of the ordinary; call your doctor right away if you have questions or concerns.

If your doctor inserted a retrievable IVC filter during heart surgery, it’s important to be aware of potential complications such as a stroke, heart attack, or blood clots. If you have a complication, you may be eligible for compensation.

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