An aneurysm is a weak point in the wall of a blood vessel, commonly caused by atherosclerosis, or narrowing of the arteries. Trauma, infection and congenital defects are other culprits. Making the following lifestyle changes may help decrease your risk.
Things You'll Need
- Antimicrobial Soap
- Relaxation Tapes
- Yoga Video
Maintain a healthy body weight, and exercise aerobically at least four times a week, 30 to 40 minutes each time. Exercising for 30 minutes every day is ideal.
Eat lots of fruits, vegetables and high-fiber foods. Avoid fats, especially saturated fats such as those found in meat, butter and beef shortening.
Stop smoking if you do. Nicotine causes blood vessels to narrow and constrict, forcing them to work harder. The extra workload can make a weak spot rupture.
Monitor your blood pressure. High blood pressure makes the heart and blood vessels work harder. See "How to Prevent Hypertension."
Treat high blood pressure immediately. High blood pressure can cause an aneurysm to rupture. See "How to Treat Hypertension."
Check your cholesterol, and make major dietary changes if it's too high. If your cholesterol remains high despite the changes, ask your doctor about oral cholesterol-lowering medication.
Check your blood sugar. Chronic high blood sugar is harmful to arteries. Many times, free blood sugar tests are offered at grocery stores and pharmacies.
Ask your doctor to check you for syphilis. Chronic syphilis can cause an aneurysm.
Avoid constipation. Straining to move your bowels is hard on your heart and blood vessels. Eating a healthy diet and exercising daily should keep you regular. Consult your doctor for persistent constipation.
Avoid chronic stress, which causes blood vessels to narrow, raising blood pressure and making the heart work harder. Reduce your workload, listen to relaxation tapes, take a yoga class and avoid overscheduling.
Take an aspirin every other day, unless otherwise specified by your doctor. Aspirin helps keep plaque from building up inside veins and arteries.
Tips & Warnings
- Take enteric or coated aspirin to diminish gastrointestinal side effects.
- Avoid taking oral contraceptives if you feel you're at risk for atherosclerosis.
- Avoid infections. Good hand washing with antimicrobial soap is the best way to protect yourself from contracting other people's germs. Stand out of the range of people's sneezes and coughs.
- Get enough sleep to keep your immune system constantly recharged.
- Aneurysms occur in many different vessels throughout the body, so symptoms vary. But any time you experience a steady, visceral, boring type of pain located deep inside your body, consult a physician.
Symptoms of a Ruptured Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm
The abdominal aorta is the largest blood vessel in the body. It is located between your diaphragm and pelvis, where it divides...
how to Prevent Heart Attacks
More than 1 million Americans suffer heart attacks every year. Many of them do not survive. Some never even make it to...