Caregivers and loved ones of women heart patients manage a wide range of tasks and responsibilities. Here are some insights to help caregivers ensure the health and well-being of the women with heart disease they care for:
As a caregiver, you are a patient advocate.
- Learn as much as you can about the heart condition of the woman heart patient you are caring for.
- Go to her doctor visits with her and get to know her healthcare team.
- Ask questions on her behalf if you are not sure you understand what the doctor said.
- Talk to her pharmacist about the medications she is taking so you know what each one is for.
As a caregiver, you are here to help her take care of herself.
- Encourage the woman with heart disease you love and care for to take her medications as prescribed.
- Keep a list of the medications she is taking so you can gently remind her to take them and so you are ready in case of an emergency.
- Review the family diet and encourage healthy eating.
- Ask her doctor about exercise restrictions and encourage her to exercise within the limits recommended by her doctor.
- Take over heavier household and yard chores.
As a caregiver, you are an important source of emotional and social support.
- Listen her and learn to understand the fears she is experiencing as a result of her heart condition.
- Do fun activities that you both enjoy.
- Gather a caregiving team of friends and family who can help you when you get tired or frustrated.
- Encourage her to attend a WomenHeart Support Network led by other women living with heart disease.