What is Cardiac Rehab?
Here's how cardiac rehabilitation can help you regain control of your health.
Cardiac rehabilitation is a program geared to individuals recovering from a heart attack, heart surgery or other forms of heart disease. It is designed to improve cardiovascular health and prevent future heart issues through exercise training, education for heart-healthy living and counseling to reduce stress.
During cardiac rehab, team members – including doctors, nurses, therapists and nutrition, exercise and mental health specialists – work together to develop an individualized program of education and instruction to meet each patient's needs. They also offer support and encouragement, helping patients achieve their health goals without the worry of overdoing it.
Cardiac rehab is not easy or fun, but it is one of the best things you can do for your heart following a cardiac event. Not only will you learn how to exercise safely, eat better, lose weight and live a healthier life, but you'll also benefit from the feeling that you don't need to face heart disease alone. The camaraderie and emotional support experienced in this setting will allow you to share experiences, learn skills and change habits that will help lead you on the path to better health. This will help give you the self-confidence to believe you are going to recover.
Here are some of the most common aspects of a cardiac rehab program:
- Teaches strategies to deal with high blood pressure, high cholesterol, smoking, obesity, diabetes and inactivity
- Develops a safe exercise routine that can be continued at home
- Establishes a healthy diet, which promotes weight control and lowers cholesterol
- Provides resources to help smokers conquer their habit
- Demonstrates stress management and relaxation techniques
Research has shown that cardiac rehabilitation programs can improve recovery time and overall cardiac health. They may also reduce the risk of future heart problems and cardiac events.
If you think you could benefit from cardiac rehabilitation, click here for more information or to make an appointment with our certified cardiac rehab team. We can help lessen recovery time and reduce the risk of future heart disease.
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Date Last Reviewed: December 7, 2018
Editorial Review: Andrea Cohen, Editorial Director, Baldwin Publishing, Inc. Contact Editor
Medical Review: Andrew P. Overman, DPT, MS, COMT, CSCS