Heart disease is a very dangerous condition for any patient. While the name implies it is a single condition, in fact, it encompasses a multitude of blood vessel diseases, heart rhythm problems, and others. Smoking can be one of the core risk factors that lead to the development of heart disease in people. While the population at large may be aware of the danger that smoking represents, a portion of the population continues to smoke and disregards any evidence about the danger of this activity. The purpose of this paper is to create a patient teaching plan with the goal of heart disease prevention by addressing the most common risk factors.
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Preventable Disease Overview
Heart disease involves a range of conditions that affect various aspects of the heart. It may be caused by atherosclerosis, unhealthy diet, the lack of exercise, and excessive weight and smoking among other factors. The symptoms may differ depending on the specific type of the condition such as blood vessel heart disease, with chest pain, shortness of breath, numbness in legs or arms, and pain in the neck being common symptoms, while heart defect-related variation is associated with the paleness of skin and swelling in the legs. Some of the common risk factors include old age, smoking, poor diet, high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, stress, and poor hygiene. Smoking was a core issue in the previously examined health history case. These factors should be examined during the assessment process. Heart disease is associated with severe complications such as heart failure, heart attack, stroke, aneurysm, peripheral artery disease, and sudden cardiac arrest. All of these complications are highly dangerous (Record et al., 2015). Therefore, an evidence-based intervention such as a teaching plan is required. History of heart disease in the patient’s family, high blood pressure, and the smoking habit of the patient were the primary indicators that they were at risk of developing this condition.
Since one of the primary risk factors for heart disease is smoking, the intervention should be focused on reducing its occurrence and breaking the smoking habit of the patient. This may be achieved in a multitude of ways. Since nicotine addiction is chemical in nature, the process of quitting can be difficult. One of the more common interventions for this condition is the gradual reduction of nicotine intake over time through the use of old alternative means such as nicotine patches or electronic cigarettes. With the gradual reduction of the nicotine dose, the patient should be able to eventually stop smoking altogether. Studies show that people who stop smoking become much less susceptible to heart disease in the process. While it does not prevent every type of the condition, this intervention should be able to help patients whose primary risk factor is smoking (Biener & Hargraves, 2015; Hubbard, Gorely, Ozakinci, Polson, & Forbat, 2016). The short-term goal of the plan is the reduction of nicotine intake. The long-term goal is the complete stop of the patient’s addiction to nicotine.
Implementation: Teaching Plan
The teaching plan for this condition would include both theoretical and practical information for the patient. The first step would be to explain the nature of their potential condition. By understanding the effects that smoking has on a human heart, a patient is more likely to positively receive the intervention. The second step is to introduce the patient to the method of nicotine dose reduction through alternative applications. The patient would be recommended to use nicotine patches or other similar solutions to gradually reduce their nicotine intake. Subsequently, they would reduce the dose until nicotine use becomes irrelevant and the addiction subsides. To help in this process, the patient would be given literature related to the process of quitting smoking. Afterward, the patient’s condition would be evaluated.
The evaluation would be focused on testing the condition of a person’s heart through blood pressure tests, breathing tests, and possibly through physical ability tests. The patient’s condition should be more positive after they stop smoking. If the condition of the patient does not change after they stop smoking they may require additional testing because a variety of issues may lead to heart disease. The diet of the patient would be examined, as well as their family history, and other factors. A new plan will be created if another factor is found to be the possible cause of the condition.
Heart disease is preventable, but if left unchecked, it may lead to dire consequences. It encompasses a number of conditions with varying symptoms, but the majority of its risk factors are shared by all of its variations. They include smoking, obesity, diabetes, poor diet, lack of exercise, and other factors that are related to human habits. Smoking was chosen as the target of this teaching plan because it was present in the previously examined patient. By reducing the nicotine dose that the patient takes on a daily basis, the condition could be prevented. However, if they do not show signs of improvement after quitting smoking, other risk factors should be examined, and a new plan should be created.
Biener, L., & Hargraves, J. L. (2015). A longitudinal study of electronic cigarette use among a population-based sample of adult smokers: Association with smoking cessation and motivation to quit. Nicotine & Tobacco Research, 17(2), 127–133.
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Hubbard, G., Gorely, T., Ozakinci, G., Polson, R., & Forbat, L. (2016). A systematic review and narrative summary of family-based smoking cessation interventions to help adults quit smoking. BMC Family Practice, 17(73), 1-20.
Record, N. B., Onion, D. K., Prior, R. E., Dixon, D. C., Record, S. S., Fowler, F. L., … Pearson, T. A. (2015). Community-wide cardiovascular disease prevention programs and health outcomes in a rural county, 1970-2010. JAMA, 313(2), 147–155.