If you suffer from irregular heartbeats, your doctor might recommend a pacemaker. Here’s all you need to know about living with a pacemaker.
The pacemaker is a small device implanted under your skin so that your heartbeats can be regulated and controlled. Essentially, it helps your heart to beat like it normally should.
A pacemaker of heart is made from two parts:
- The first is known as the pulse generator which has the battery and necessary components to ensure your heart is beating normally.
- The second part consists of small wires that are used to send electrical signals directly to your heart.
A pacemaker is used to treat arrhythmias. If your heartbeat is too rapid, known as tachycardia, then your doctor can recommend a pacemaker.
Else, if your heartbeat is too slow, known as bradycardia, then your doctor might also recommend a pacemaker.
A pacemaker is essentially used to control your heartbeats that are irregular.
You might require a biventricular pacemaker if you have chronic heart failure. This device helps to sync your left and right side of the heart to beat normally.
A pacemaker is essential to ensure proper blood flow takes place. When your heart beats too fast or too slow, then the blood flow is affected which eventually affects the rest of your body.
That is, you will feel really tired, you might start to feel dizzy, and you might start to get out of breath.
Improper blood flow can cause your vital organs to fail which can even lead to death. This is why maintaining your heart’s rhythm is important.
A pacemaker can help record your heartbeat which enables your doctor to properly analyze your heart rhythm. Your doctor will determine whether you are a good candidate and the type of pacemaker that you need.
What To Expect When Living With A Pacemaker?
Most people are able to lead normal lives after having a pacemaker implanted in them. Usually, there is no problem if you continue doing the routine activities that you do.
The only time you will need to limit your physical activity is after the pacemaker implantation surgery. However, even after complete healing, you should speak to your doctor about which exercises are safe for you to do.
You will be able to do household work, return to work, and be able to lead a healthy sex life after the surgery.
You might not be able to travel up to a certain time and even driving can come with restrictions, so you need to speak to your doctor about that.
What To Pay Attention To?
There are certain precautions that you need to be aware of when you are living with a pacemaker. Some of the most common ones are as follows:
- Radiation treatment can cause problems to occur in your pacemaker so you should inform your doctor about the pacemaker in advance.
- You should avoid getting close to machines that work with magnetic fields such as MRI as these can interfere with the pacemaker’s working.
- If you have kidney stones and you will undergo shock wave lithotripsy then you should inform the doctor in advance because it can cause the pacemaker to malfunction.
- Doctors recommend that you avoid diathermy because it can have a negative impact on the pacemaker.
- You need to be careful when you go through the airport. Tell the security personnel about your pacemaker and ensure you don’t spend too much time near the metal devices.
- If you need to undergo a surgical procedure then you should tell the surgeon in advance. In some cases, it might be required that the pacemaker be turned off.
- You should avoid keeping mobile phones close to the pacemaker. Try to keep your mobile phone at least 6 inches away from the pacemaker.
- If you are working in vehicles that have large motors in them then you should turn them off because they can interfere with your pacemaker.
- If you are going to get transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation therapy done, then inform the doctor in advance about having a pacemaker.
- You should avoid being close to high-voltage machines and devices because these can cause your pacemaker to improperly function.
- Keep your earphones at least 1.2 inches away from your pacemaker. Also, you should make sure you keep them away from the pacemaker when not in use.
The Pacemaker Area Is A Sensible One
One of the main points to remember is to ensure that you do not hurt the area where the pacemaker is inserted.
If you do get hit in the area of the pacemaker then you should book an appointment with your doctor immediately. That is because any hit to the pacemaker can affect how well it functions.
If you feel discomfort at any point such as after exercising, then you should contact your doctor immediately.
It is best to always consult your doctor before starting a new exercise regimen so you know whether it is safe for you to participate or not. Your doctor will continue to monitor your condition.
Also, a pacemaker can last for 7 or more years. So make sure to take good care of it.
Living with a pacemaker can be easy if you follow the above tips. Don’t worry, in time you’ll get used to the new lifestyle.
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