Mary Ann Wietbrock RN MSN ACNS-BC CMC
Do you know why you are so tired when you have heart failure? Carrying around all the extra weight is only part of it. Or, maybe you thought it was because you were getting older.
Heart failure is an enlarged heart with a poor pump. The heart muscle is flabby and does not eject blood like it used to. This causes less blood flow to the rest of the body. This can explain the way you will feel.
With extra fluid weight, it takes more effort to move your body. When you gain extra weight, your clothes and shoes fit tighter. The edema is swelling in the feet that may go all the way to your stomach. Always call your health care provider if you gain more than two pounds in one day, or five pounds in one week.
Less sleep causes you to feel more tired. Your lungs may be full of fluid making it harder to breath and sleep. Are you using more pillows to sleep or are you sleeping in a chair? This may be a sign of worsening heart failure and is a good time to call your health care provider.
Is your tired feeling from extra fluid or loss of muscle mass? How much time do you spend on your feet? It seems these days that we go from one chair to another. The more we sit the more muscle mass we lose, which causes us to feel tired.
When you are unable to walk your thirty minutes five days a week, spend the time standing to prevent loss of muscle mass. You will feel less tired and have more energy. You can spend five minutes at a time and spread out the thirty minutes over the day.
Mary Ann Wietbrock is an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse. She works as a Holistic Wellness Consultant at Cardinal Elements. She is a personal wellness coach, speaker, and writer. www.cardinalelements.com for more information.