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How to manage heart failure

  • It is important to learn the symptoms¬†of worsening heart failure and call your health care provider right away.


    It is important to weigh yourself every day and write down your weight.

    • Weigh yourself every morning after you urinate and before you eat or drink anything.
    • Use the same scale.
    • Weigh yourself without clothes.

    This will affect how you feel and how well you manage your heart failure.

    Use the following tips to help you feel better and manage your heart failure:

    • Keep all appointments with your health care provider and health team members.
    • Take your medicines as directed.
    • Carry a current medicine list with you at all times.
    • Weigh yourself each day and record your weight.
    • Follow a well-balanced diet that includes 1,500 to 2,000 milligrams (mg) of sodium each day.
    • Maintain a healthy weight. Talk with your health care provider if you are overweight or underweight.
    • Bring all of your weight and activity records to all of your appointments.
    • Exercise every day (as directed by your health care team) and be sure to get enough rest.
    • Do not smoke. Avoid secondhand smoke.
    • Be aware of the stress in your life and try to find ways to relieve it.


    Call your health care provider if you gain:

    • 3 pounds in 1 day
    • or

    • 5 pounds in 1 week

    Managing your heart failure: At a glance

    For a quick reference, print and post this table on your refrigerator or next to the bathroom mirror. It will help remind you what you need to do to every day to manage your heart failure.