One of the most overlooked things about struggling with heart failure or any other debilitating conditions is the effect it can have on a persons mental health, I am 36 years old and in the past 3 years I have went from being a fitness instructor and in very good physical shape to almost house bound unable to work or have my kids alone overnight and on the transplant list for a new heart.
My biggest struggle has been the lack of activity that I was so used to, I was always used to being the strong, fit person of our group and going from that to needing help with most physical activities has been one of the hardest things I have had to deal with.
I urge anyone going through this to seek help from the outset and not leave it too late as I feel I did. It wasn't until after I had already slipped down a very dark hole and pushed myself emotionally away from all the people that loved and cared about me that I finally sought help. Even then it's been a hard long road that I am still battling now but making people aware of your thoughts and feelings throughout all of this will help you get all the support that is out there for you.
Best wishes to you all,
Your post has resonated with me. You are so right about getting help with the mental aspects of heart failure from the start. In fact, the reason I saw your post today was that I was looking to see if anyone had recommended any online courses to support both physical and mental recovery.
I was in good physical shape before my Heart Attack, training most days of the week (including boxing training 3 times a week) walking everywhere, really fit for my age (63)
It’s been the medication that has slowed me down. I had bad breathing problems from both Bisoprolol and ticagrelor AND a Ramipril cough. When I saw the dr yesterday and he listened and changed the meds, it was like a huge weight lifted. I hadn’t realised how low I’d become till I started coming out the other side. Like you, I pushed people away and was going into a dark hole.
I’m going to talk to my cardiac nurse and urge her to get more mental help elements incorporated into the rehab. And I’m still on the look out for online resources to keep me out of the black hole. But I’ll post my plea separately.
Thanks for sharing. This is a really important thing you’ve raised here.