Atrial Fibrillation and Stress

It has long been believed that increased levels of stress can contribute to increasing incidents of afib episodes. While formal studies have not been performed, the National Institute of Health reports that job stress does contribute to an increase in afib in men. Anecdotal evidence supports the assertion that stress, to some degree, contributes to afib episodes.

Regardless of the degree with which stress can aggravate afib, increased stress levels have been shown to be detrimental to everyone. As a result, even if your cardiac electrophysiologist has not formally diagnosed you with atrial fibrillation, reducing stress in your life can result in substantial benefits. And, for those with diagnosed cases of afib, reduced levels of stress can have a double effect: improve overall health and reduce incidents of afib episodes. Virtually everyone can benefit from reducing stress in our everyday lives, whether or not you have afib.

If you have been diagnosed with afib, you should speak with your electrophysiologist in Houston about stress in general, as well as discuss specific steps you can take to help reduce your overall stress levels. Here are some useful tips on reducing the stress that afib sufferers, as well as everyone else, can choose to lead a healthier life.

1. Healthy Diet: A healthy diet provides many benefits for everyone. Maintenance of healthy weight levels, a proper balance of vitamins, proteins, and fiber, and reduced levels of harmful toxins all contribute to a healthier body. And, a more robust body results in feeling good and maintaining a positive and more relaxed attitude.

2. Exercise: Exercise has long been recommended to help reduce stress. For those with afib, gentle walking or cycling can improve blood flow and muscle tone. You should discuss with your electrophysiologist the amount and type of exercise that would be appropriate, taking into consideration your afib condition. The physicians at Atrial Fibrillation Center Of America can design an exercise program tailored specifically for your particular situation.

3. Practice Relaxation Techniques: Relaxation techniques are an excellent way of reducing stress and, because they are comfortable and convenient, can be done at almost any time during the day, even while sitting at a work desk. These techniques include slow, measured breathing exercises, progressive muscle relaxation, and visualizing peaceful settings and situations. If your particular situation offers an opportunity to listen to soft, relaxing music while carrying out the exercises, then this can be an added benefit.

4. Sleep: Getting an adequate amount of quality sleep helps support the stress reduction efforts listed above. A high quality sleep regime along with a healthy diet, exercise, and relaxation exercises helps each patient maintain the lowest possible levels of daily stress. The result can be a reduced number of afib incidents with lower levels of intensity. If your cardiologist has performed electrophysiology studies, then one component of an afib management plan may be a prescription for building an overall healthy lifestyle. Discuss your options with the doctors at Atrial Fibrillation Center Of America to develop an afib management program just for you.

Atrial Fibrillation Center Of America offers the finest in atrial fibrillation diagnosis and management with access to a complete suite of advanced tools and techniques including electrophysiology studies, electrocardiograms, stress tests, Holter Monitor, and implantable loop recorders. If you believe you may have afib, or if you feel that your heart is not beating quite right, then you should make an appointment with the physicians at Atrial Fibrillation Center Of America. Our doctors will be happy to discuss your situation, answer your questions, make a diagnosis, and develop a treatment plan if appropriate. And, if you suffer from afib, make an appointment to discuss ways to reduce stress and a healthier lifestyle with reduced incidents of afib. Call us today, 832-478-5067.

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