Types of Chronic Diseases
Hypertension (high blood pressure)
Fifty-eight percent of people are treated for hypertension – a common condition that involves both how much blood your heart pumps, as well as how resistant your arteries are to the blood flow. When your heart pumps a lot of blood and you have narrow arteries which resist the flow, that’s when you get high blood pressure, also known as hypertension. The danger of hypertension is not only that you can have it for years and not know it, but it can cause other serious health conditions, like stroke and heart attacks.
Things you can do to try to prevent, or reduce, high blood pressure includes
Maintaining a healthy weight (Losing just 10 pounds can reduce blood pressure)
Regulate your stress levels
Limit salt and alcohol consumption
Exercise daily, including a combination of moderate to vigorous-intensity aerobic activities, flexibility and stretching, and muscle strengthening
Check your blood pressure regularly; the quicker you catch pre-hypertension, the more likely you are to prevent high blood pressure
The above tips can help you avoid or successfully manage high blood pressure. However, if you or someone you know is struggling to manage hypertension, these measures can build the skills necessary to control how chronic conditions affect their life.
Dealing with fatigue, pain, frustration, or isolation
Maintaining strength, flexibility, and endurance
Communicating with family, friends, and health professionals
High Cholesterol (hyperlipidemia)
47% percent of people are treated for high cholesterol – a condition that occurs when your body has an excess of bad fats (or lipids), resulting in your arteries getting clogged, which can lead to heart disease.
Lifestyle factors you can control when it comes to preventing or managing high cholesterol include
Abstaining from smoking and excessive alcohol consumption
Being active each day
Managing your weight
Minimizing saturated fats and Trans fats in your diet
Thirty-one percent of people are treated for arthritis – an inflammation of your joints, which causes pain and stiffness and is more common in women.
There are steps you can take to delay the onset of arthritis or manage the symptoms, including
Exercise at least 5 times per week, for 30 minutes each time, to improve function and decrease pain
Stay within the recommended weight for your height; losing one pound can remove four pounds of pressure on your knees
Make sure your back, legs, and arms are always supported
Take precautions to avoid joint injuries
Do not smoke
Ischemic Heart Disease (coronary heart disease)
Twenty-nine percent of people are treated for ischemic heart disease – a condition that is caused by a build-up of plaque that narrows the arteries leading to the heart. Narrow or blocked arteries decreases the amount of oxygen-rich blood delivered to the heart. This can cause other complications like blood clots, angina, or a heart attack.
Habits you can incorporate to help
Refrain from saturated and trans fats, and limit sugar, salt intake
Get seven to eight hours of sleep each night
Keep your stress levels in check
Do regular cardio exercises
Abstain from smoking
Talk to your doctor about the major risk factors, including high cholesterol and high blood pressure
Diabetes (high blood sugar)
Twenty-seven percent of people are treated for diabetes – a disease that occurs when your body is resistant to, or doesn’t produce enough, insulin. Insulin is what your body uses to get energy from food, and distributes it to your cells. When this doesn’t happen, you get high blood sugar, which can lead to complications such as kidney disease, heart disease, or blindness. Chances of having diabetes increases significantly after age 45.
To keep you from developing diabetes or to manage this condition, your doctor may suggest
Eating a healthy diet, including monitoring your carbohydrate and calorie intake
Talking to your doctor about alcohol consumption
Exercising for 30 minutes five times a week to keep your blood glucose levels in check
Control weight gain
Safely losing 5-7% of body weight if you are diagnosed with pre-diabetes
Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD)
Eighteen percent of people are treated for chronic kidney disease (CKD) – a slow loss in kidney function over time. People dealing with CKD have an increased risk of developing heart disease or kidney failure.
You can do the following to prevent or diminish symptoms of CKD
Understand what damages your kidney; Diabetes and high blood pressure are the greatest risk factors for kidney damage, so taking steps to prevent these diseases is your best strategy
Early detection and treatment; Talk to your doctor regularly, stay current on screenings, and keep up on prescriptions you need to diminish symptoms
Fourteen percent of people are treated for heart failure – a condition that happens once the heart cannot adequately offer blood and oxygen to all of the organs within the body. The heart might become enlarged, develop additional muscle mass, or pump faster so as to meet the body’s needs, causing you to feel tired, light-weight headed, nauseous, confused, or lack an appetite. The best prevention is to follow a doctor’ recommendations to decrease your risk for coronary heart disease and high blood pressure.
Fourteen percent of people sought treatment for depression – a treatable medical condition that’s not a normal part of aging. Depression causes persistent feelings of sadness, pessimism, hopelessness, fatigue, and difficulty creating decisions, changes in appetite, a loss of interest in activities, and more.
Steps you’ll be able to go for facilitate with depression include
Manage stress levels. Reach out to family and friends during rough spells and consider regular meditation
Eat a healthy diet. What you put into your body can have an effect on your mood, therefore specialize in foods that are high in nutrients and promote the release of endorphins and those “feel good” chemicals, and limit consumption of things like alcohol, caffeine, artificial sweeteners, and extremely processed foods
Routine exercise. Exercise has a number of physical and psychological benefits, including improving your mood through the release of endorphins and other “feel good” brain chemicals, boosting self-confidence and self-worth through meeting goals and improving your physical appearance, and increased socialization through interactions at gyms and group classes
Talk to your doctor. If you’ve experienced any of the warning signs of depression, talk to your doctor, and ask about your treatment options. Antidepressant medications or psychotherapy could be right for you
Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia
Eleven percent of people on health care are treated for Alzheimer’s disease or another kind of dementia. Alzheimer’s disease is one specific type of dementia – a condition that causes memory loss and difficulty thinking or problem-solving to the purpose that it interferes with on a daily basis. Dementia isn’t a normal part of aging and is caused by changes within the brain over time.
The most important risk factors for these chronic conditions are stuff you typically can’t control, like age, family history, and genetics.
However studies have instructed incorporating the subsequent habits into your lifestyle could slow or prevent onset
Exercise. Staying active isn’t just good for your heart; it’s also nice for your brain
Sleep. Your brain will realign when you’re sleeping, so gaining access to least 7 hours of deep sleep a night is crucial
Be smart about your diet. Analysis suggests that some foods will negatively affect your brain
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (lung disorder)
Eleven percent of people are treated for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), a chronic disease that includes 2 main conditions; emphysema and chronic bronchitis. COPD makes it hard to breathe and causes shortness of breath, coughing, and chest tightness. The number one way to prevent COPD or slow its progression – is to quit or avoid smoking. Also, try to avoid secondhand smoke, chemical fumes, and dust, which can irritate your lungs.
If you have already got COPD, complete the treatment that your doctor has prescribed, get the flu and pneumonia vaccines as recommended by your doctor, and continue to remain active!
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