Atherosclerosis treatment usually begins with lifestyle changes, such as eating well, exercising regularly, quitting smoking, and maintaining a healthy weight. In addition, medications may be prescribed, such as ACE inhibitors or beta-blockers. In advanced cases, atherosclerosis treatment may require special procedures -- such as angioplasty or open heart surgery -- to open an artery and improve blood flow.
Atherosclerosis Treatment: An Introduction
There's no getting around it: Atherosclerosis changes your life. For many people, living with a condition caused by atherosclerosis requires changes both big and small, from undergoing major surgery to adding more fruits and vegetables to their diets. Change can be difficult, and sometimes even scary. But with support, resources, and a good supply of determination, most people are able to meet these new challenges well.
Atherosclerosis treatment will vary for each particular situation. Everyone diagnosed with atherosclerosis will need to undergo lifestyle changes. Depending on the severity, these may be the only changes a person needs to make. For more serious conditions, atherosclerosis treatment may include medications or certain procedures.
Lifestyle Changes as Part of Atherosclerosis Treatment
If you have atherosclerosis, you know by now that it's vital to control it. Making lifestyle changes that improve your atherosclerosis risk factors is one important part of atherosclerosis treatment. Eating well, getting regular physical activity, and maintaining a healthy weight will help to lessen the severity of your condition. If you smoke, you'll need to quit. Reducing stress and limiting alcohol use can also improve your heart health. And if you have diabetes, you will need to carefully manage it. Be sure to see your doctor regularly for follow-up visits.
There are a number of links related to lifestyle changes available on eMedTV. Some include:
- DASH Diet for high blood pressure
- Low Cholesterol Diet for high cholesterol
- Diet and Heart Disease for heart disease
- BMI Calculator or BMI Chart to find your ideal weight.
There are also articles about lifestyle changes with regards to heart disease that also apply to other conditions caused by atherosclerosis. Some include:
- Smoking and Heart Disease
- Heart Disease and Exercise
- Stress and Heart Disease
- Alcohol and Heart Disease
- Weight and Heart Disease
- Obesity and Heart Disease.