For Caregivers

When someone experiences some type of heart disease, it changes their life and often the lives of those who care about them. Those family or friends who step up to take on the role of caregiving need information, inspiration and resources to help them succeed in supporting their loved one. 

For caregivers features stories by and about caregivers as well as tips, insights and resources to help with the day-to-day job of being there for your loved one.

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Featured For Caregivers

Why Cholesterol Matters

Cholesterol can be confusing — how can something that is necessary for human life, that is present in every cell, be bad for us?

Understanding and Tracking Your Blood Pressure

Blood pressure is an important part of everyone’s health, because high blood pressure contributes to many forms of cardiovascular diseases. It benefits everyone to understand and monitor their blood pressure.

Tips for Choosing a Blood Pressure Monitor

Many people have high blood pressure (HBP) for years without knowing it. Generally, there are no symptoms, but when HBP goes untreated, it damages arteries and vital organs throughout your body. That’s why it is often called the “silent killer.”

The Ins & Outs of Hospitalization for Heart Failure (Part Three)

Heart failure patients are often hospitalized. This third installment in our series on heart failure looks at managing self-care to minimize just how often re-hospitalizations happen.

Your Oxygen First

Anyone who has flown commercially has heard the flight attendant's instruction, if the plane loses pressure and the oxygen masks drop, put on your own mask first before trying to help someone else. This is sage advice for family caregivers as well — if caregivers don’t take care of themselves first, eventually they won’t be able to care for their loved one.

Why Every Patient Needs an Advocate

American healthcare is complicated and getting more so. Even the most informed patients and family members entering the healthcare system may have difficulty knowing how to navigate it to receive the best care for themselves and loved ones.

Helpful Resources for Patient Advocates

List of organizations and books that may be helpful for those who serve as patient advocates for family members or friends.

No Place Like Home

What you need to know about home healthcare agencies

No More 'ER'

Miriam and Robert Epps had been married eight years when Robert was diagnosed with aortic regurgitation and required valve replacement surgery. In those eight years she had never seen him sick. “I was scared and stressed by the diagnosis,” she recalled.

Fighting Chronic Pain

Chronic pain occurs when pain signals in the body consistently fire in the nervous system for weeks, months or years. The emotional side effects can be just as unforgiving, causing a variety of conditions like depression, fear and anxiety.

Men Taking Care

A generation ago, male caregivers were rare. Today gender roles are changing — and more people are surviving serious health crises and being released from the hospital sooner. This increases the need for caregiving at home. Now about a third of all caregivers are men.

Chapter Two

Coping with the loss of your loved one's former self

Bridge Over Troubled Water

Even the most dedicated, dependable family caregiver will eventually feel overstressed, overloaded and overwhelmed. Reach out to ease your mind and prevent caregiver burnout.

The Limits of Love & Devotion

Have you ever had that dream where you're taking a high-stakes test and you panic because the material hadn't been covered in class and you don't know the answers? For most of us, that's what it's like to be a caregiver.

When Your Inheritance Includes Caregiving

As treatment of serious or life-threatening medical conditions has steadily improved, the number of years that caregivers can expect to carry out their responsibilities has steadily increased.
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Caregiver Resources

Helpful Resources for Patient Advocates

List of organizations and books that may be helpful for those who serve as patient advocates for family members or friends.

For Caregivers

Find helpful and supportive information and downloadable PDFs on our site especially for caregivers of loved ones with heart disease.

Patient & Family Support Network

The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association has created an online community called the Support Network. The goal is to connect people living with heart disease and stroke with others who are going through similar journeys.
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See moreCaregiver Stories

A Daughter's Diagnosis, A Mother's Wake-up Call

Cat Davis Ahmed knew cholesterol was a family problem, but didn’t take it seriously until it affected her daughter.

Facing the Inevitable

“Your baby’s only hope for survival is a heart transplant.” No parent is ever prepared to hear those words. And you never forget them, nor who said them, nor the day they were spoken.

What NOT to Do

When a person is having chest pain, within which timeframe should you call 911? The answer may seem obvious, but I became a CPR instructor because we did everything WRONG when my husband, Steve, had a heart attack in 2007.

Kristen Holihan's Why

In 1995, Kristen Holihan got a wonderful Christmas present four days early — the birth of her son, Tyler Matesen. But she would not take him home until after the new year, and then with overwhelming fear and anxiety.

Eagles Save the Day

They were watching TV when his friend Blake Wilson heard a thump in the kitchen and found Daniel face down on the floor. Wilson yelled for the two other boys, Jon Evert and Blake Perez. Perez called 911, and with direction from the 911 operator, Evert began CPR.
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Heart News

Heart health news you can use about new scientific findings, public policy, programs and resources.


Articles, poems and art submitted by heart disease survivors and their loved ones.

Life's Simple 7

Improving your health is as easy as minding seven simple health factors and behaviors. Tips and information to help you improve your health and enhance your quality of life.

Life Is Why

Everyone has a reason to live a longer, healthier life. These heart patients, their loved ones and others share their 'whys'. We'd love for you to share yours, too!

Simple Cooking

Cooking at home can be a daunting task, but a rewarding one for your diet and lifestyle (and your wallet). Making small changes in your diet is important to your heart health. Here are simple, healthy and affordable recipes and cooking tips.