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Treatment For Atherosclerosis

Treatments for arteriosclerosis will often include lifestyle changes with diet and exercise, taking cholesterol lowering and blood pressure medication, as well as learning to deal with stress. Atherosclerosis is a condition that is often referred to as hardening of the arteries. Some of the things that can negatively affect the blood vessels and arteries within the body are stress, smoking, eating foods with hydrogenated oils or trans fats, high blood pressure, high cholesterol levels, and health conditions such as diabetes. Hardening of the arteries can affect the heart and the brain negatively resulting in a heart attack or stroke. Since the effects of hardening of the arteries can be very serious a person suffering with the symptoms should seek treatment for atherosclerosis. Some of the symptoms are shortness of breath, chest pain, pain in arms or legs, and fatigue.
Damage to an artery will cause blood cells to accumulate at the site for repair. Over time fatty deposits will harden causing the artery to narrow. When this happens organs and tissues in the body do not receive an adequate blood supply. Since one of the causes of hardening of the arteries is smoking a very important treatment for atherosclerosis should include quitting. Quitting may be difficult for people who have smoked over a long period of time. A physician will be able to suggest treatments to help a person to quit. These methods may include medication and counseling therapy or both.

Eating healthy and exercising can have a positive effect on hardening of the arteries. An ideal diet should include whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and foods low in saturated fat. Exercise and eating healthy can result in weight loss which will also help those who suffer with narrowing arteries. Most physicians advise patients to exercise daily for at least 30 minutes. Exercise length and activity level may have to be adjusted based upon other health considerations. Treatments for arteriosclerosis that include diet changes and exercise can help tremendously with artery health. Another significant thing that can add to a person’s health is the fear of the Lord. “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding. For by Me thy days shall be multiplied, and the years of thy life shall be increased.” (Proverbs 9:10-11)

High blood pressure can be a very dangerous health threat; it can easily go undetected because there are not any symptoms associated directly with it. A normal blood pressure reading is usually below 130/80; when the readings go up to 140/90 a person may be experiencing the first signs of hypertension. A treatment for atherosclerosis should include monitoring blood pressure and reporting high readings to a physician. Blood pressure medication can be prescribed to help bring down readings and minimize damage to the blood vessels. High blood pressure left untreated will actually cause damage to the inner lining of the arteries. Untreated high blood pressure can result in stroke, heart attack, heart failure, and kidney failure.

High cholesterol levels can lead to arterial damage and eventually cause serious health problems. Cholesterol is a fatty substance that is found in the bloodstream and cells. An overabundance of cholesterol is a concern because this excessive amount sticks to arterial walls and over time can lead to atherosclerosis. Optimum levels of total cholesterol are below 200 mg/dl; anything above that should be monitored closely. As a preventative treatment for atherosclerosis a physician will normally prescribe medication for individuals who have high cholesterol levels. Eating healthy and exercise can also help to lower cholesterol levels in the blood.

Diabetes is a health condition that if left untreated can contribute to heart disease and stroke. A diagnosis of diabetes is normally made when a person has high blood sugar counts after fasting. Type 1 diabetes results when a person doesn’t develop any insulin. Insulin is needed in order for the body to use glucose to feed cells. Type 2 diabetes results when a person either doesn’t produce enough insulin or the body doesn’t use the insulin effectively. Since the body is not taking care of the sugar in the blood effectively it builds up in the blood and damages the eyes, kidneys, and nerves. High blood sugar levels in the arteries can cause underlying damage resulting in hardening of the arteries. Therefore treatments for arteriosclerosis should include careful monitoring of blood sugar levels especially in individuals who have been diagnosed with diabetes.

Prolonged stress can affect the body in negative ways and can eventually result in heart disease and other serious health problems. This is a reason why treatments for arteriosclerosis often include the necessity for stress reduction. Stress may not directly cause hardening of the arteries but it can contribute to it and other illnesses of the body. People who are driven and that tend to be workaholics are more prone to developing atherosclerosis. Studies have shown that people with a certain type of personality may be more susceptible to developing heart disease. Some of the characteristics of this personality type may include impatience, aggressive behavior, and excessive worrying. Stress can cause a multitude of symptoms including but not limited to headaches, back pain, ringing in the ears, frequent colds, stomach problems, chest pain, depression, irritability, and obsessive or compulsive behavior. Talking to a doctor about stress reduction is the beginning to finding help. Find ways to learn how to cope with stress and anxiety before the results lead to atherosclerosis.

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