Physical therapy is effective in maintaining strong cardiovascular health!
Most common cardiovascular diseases include coronary artery disease, arrhythmia, cardiomyopathy, myocardial infarction, hypertension, and heart failure. Additional conditions, such as diabetes or congenital heart disease, can cause these to develop or progress. Heart health is tremendously important, and at Evidence Physical Therapy, we want to help your patients live the healthiest life they can.
How does cardiac rehabilitation work?
Cardiac rehabilitation is a form of physical therapy that is focused around the improvement of heart health and general wellness. According to the American Heart Association, “Cardiac rehab is a medically supervised program designed to improve your cardiovascular health if you have experienced a heart attack, heart failure, angioplasty, or heart surgery.”
This rehabilitation program focuses on exercises that get the patient’s heart pumping, engaging the entire cardiovascular system. Our Glenn Dale and Clinton physical therapists will train patients on the best ways they can move their bodies in order to promote heart health.
In addition to physical exercises, patients will be provided with education on heart-healthy living, as well as stress counseling if needed. Physical therapists will discuss risk factors with their patients, such as smoking, drinking, obesity, or poor nutrition choices. Once their risk factors are determined, they will come up with a plan to reduce or eliminate risks.
Stress counseling can also be an invaluable resource if a patient is facing significant amounts of stress, as that can be a contributing factor to their heart condition. Stress takes a toll on the heart, and an important part of cardiac rehab is learning how to deal with daily stresses in a healthy manner.
Evidence supporting the success of physical therapy on heart health:
Both the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology recommend cardiac rehabilitation in patients that have sustained one or more of the following conditions:
- Acute coronary syndrome
- Myocardial infarction
- Heart failure
- Coronary artery stent placement
- Coronary artery bypass graft surgery
- Cardiac valve surgery
- Heart transplant
According to a study titled “Should I Participate in a Cardiac Rehabilitation Program?” from the Journal of the American Medical Association, cardiac rehab programs can reduce a patient’s risk of hospital readmission and cardiovascular death by 25-50%. Cardiac rehabilitation programs help to increase exercise capacity, implement healthy lifestyle behaviors, reduce feelings of depression or anxiety, and improve a patient’s overall quality of life. It also helps in lowering high cholesterol, blood pressure, and blood glucose levels, therefore also lowering the risk of sustaining an additional heart attack or stroke.
Another study titled “Physical Activity in the Prevention and Treatment of Coronary Artery Disease,” from the Journal of the American Heart Association addresses the ways in which physical exercise can prevent cardiovascular disease. In their conclusion, it is stated that leisure physical activity is an effective primary prevention method for cardiovascular disease, resulting in a 20% reduction of harmful cardiac conditions and an approximate 5-year increase in life expectancy. As a secondary prevention, exercise training (such as those found in physical therapy programs) is effective in improving endothelial function and halting the progression of coronary stenosis.
Come see Evidence Physical Therapy for heart-healthy living:
At Evidence Physical Therapy, we provide you with the resources you need to begin living a heart-healthy life. We will work closely with you to address your medical history, current heart condition, and any additional health factors that must be taken into consideration for your treatment plan. Our highly trained Glenn Dale and Clinton physical therapists will also conduct a physical evaluation to determine your current level of physical ability. From there, a specialized treatment plan will be designed for your specific needs, equipped with the necessary exercises, training, education, nutrition, and counseling services needed to help you get on track to maintaining a heart-healthy lifestyle.
Heart health is a serious topic – in fact, cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of disability and death across the nation. At Evidence Physical Therapy, we want to help you rise above that statistic. Request your appointment today, and we will get you started on the right track toward optimum cardiovascular health.