Rheumatic heart disease (RHD) is a serious and potentially life-threatening condition that can affect people of all ages. It is caused by acute rheumatic fever (ARF), a complication of strep infection that occurs when Streptococcus pyogenes, the bacteria that cause the infection, spread to other parts of the body. People with this condition have heart valves that do not function properly, increasing their risk of heart disease such as atrial fibrillation or abnormal heart rhythm, mitral valve regurgitation or heart failure, among others.
Symptoms of rheumatic heart disease can vary from person to person, but may include chest pain, shortness of breath, heart murmur, fatigue, swelling of the arms and legs, and rashes. In severe cases, RHD can lead to death.
Treatment and Management of Patients With RHD
Heart conditions, such as RHD, are typically treated with lifelong blood thinners to prevent clotting and antibiotics to prevent infection. Heart surgery may be required in some cases to repair or replace damaged heart valves.
There is no one-size-fits-all treatment, but there are a number of therapies available to help manage the condition and avoid serious complications. Many people find relief from natural therapies such as herbal remedies, dietary changes and relaxation techniques because they not only alleviate the symptoms of rheumatic heart disease but also do not have any negative side effects.
Natural Therapies for the Treatment and Prevention of RHD
Natural therapies can be used alone or in combination with conventional treatments to help manage rheumatic heart disease. They may also help to prevent the recurrence of rheumatic fever and subsequent development of RHD. While more research is needed on the use of natural therapies for RHD, there's no denying the fact that they offer a safe and affordable option for many people.
Herbal Medicine for RHD
Herbal remedies are a popular choice for treating rheumatic heart disease. Some of the most common herbs used to treat RHD include ginger, garlic, turmeric and cinnamon. These herbs can help to improve blood circulation, reduce inflammation and improve overall heart health. Additionally, they reduce the risk of ARF. Herbal remedies can be taken in tablet or capsule form. They can also be added to food or drinks. Some people also find that using a herbal infusion (a tea made from boiled herbs) is helpful for treating rheumatic heart disease. If you are considering using herbal remedies, make sure to discuss this with your doctor or healthcare provider first so that they can help you to choose the best herbs for your specific situation and advise you on the correct dosage to take.
Nutrition for RHD
Dietary changes are an important part of the treatment and management of rheumatic heart disease. Some specific dietary changes that may be beneficial for people with RHD include reducing sodium and fat intake, eating plenty of fruits and vegetables, and avoiding processed foods. Consider eating foods high in omega-3 fatty acids, which can help fight any inflammatory disease, including scarlet fever. Omega-3 fatty acids have been shown to reduce the risk of valvular heart disease and improve heart function. They can be found in fish oil supplements, flaxseeds and chia seeds.
In addition, drinking plenty of fluids is important, especially if you are experiencing swollen joints. Talk to your doctor or a dietitian about what dietary changes may be best for you.
Acupuncture for RHD
Acupuncture is a branch of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) that has been used for centuries to treat a variety of health conditions. Acupuncture is believed to help improve blood flow, reduce inflammation and promote healing, as well as help people with blood clots or suffering from irregular heartbeat. There is some evidence that acupuncture may be helpful for rheumatic heart disease. A peer-reviewed journal showed that acupuncture was significantly more effective than placebo at reducing pain and improving function in people with rheumatic heart disease. Another study found that acupuncture was effective at reducing the number of episodes of atrial fibrillation in people with rheumatic heart disease.
Exercise for RHD
Engaging in some form of physical activity is beneficial for the heart and can help to improve cardiac function. There are different types of exercise that can be beneficial for people with RHD, including aerobic exercise, strength training and stretching. Aerobic exercise helps to improve heart health and overall fitness, while strength training can help to strengthen heart muscle and function. Stretching is important for maintaining flexibility and range of motion. It is important to discuss your exercise program with your doctor or cardiologist, especially if you recently had a heart attack, heart valve surgery, or if you have high blood pressure or diabetes.
Homoeopathy for RHD
Homoeopathy is a system of medicine that has been used for centuries to treat a wide variety of health conditions. A variety of homoeopathic remedies are available to help manage irregular heart rhythms caused by rheumatic heart disease. These include Arsenicum album, Belladonna, Kali bichromicum, Phosphorus and Sulphur. Each of these remedies has specific indications that must be matched to the individual patient in order for them to be effective. Homoeopathic remedies are individualised, and a trained homoeopath will select the remedy that is most appropriate for each patient.
Not only do natural therapies such as these treat rheumatic heart disease or other conditions that may potentially lead to heart failure, but they can also keep your heart healthy and strong if used regularly.
If you or someone you know has rheumatic heart disease, talk to your doctor about the potential benefits of natural therapies. They may be able to help relieve symptoms and improve the quality of life for people with this condition.