What activities should I avoid with congestive heart failure?

Doncullon asked...

I was recently diagnosed with congestive heart failure (CHF). What should I avoid at all costs? Sex almost makes me pass out. Thank you.

Expert Answer

Jennifer Serafin, N.P. is a registered nurse and geriatric nurse practitioner at the Jewish Homes for the Aged in San Francisco.

As with any other chronic disease, you should do your best to take care of yourself.  I would avoid salt, as too much salt will make you retain fluid.  Eat a healthy diet.  You should also listen to your doctor when starting to exercise, as you should start out slowly.  You should try to get enough sleep and reduce your stress.

As your symptoms improve, you should try to have sex again.  I would check out the American Heart Association's website, as they have some good advice on this issue.