Undergoing any kind of surgery can be scary, especially those that are heart-related. But for many, pacemaker implantation feels like a brand new start to their lives. Pacemakers are small devices implanted below the skin to help a patient’s heart pump naturally. Once the recovery period passes, a pacemaker patient can generally move on with a normal and active life. But have you ever wondered how a person is to care for their pacemaker?
Here are some things you should know before you or a loved one undergoes pacemaker implantation surgery.

Directly After Surgery
During surgery, your pacemaker will be placed under the skin just below your collarbone. It’s important that – no matter how great you feel – you take it easy for at least eight weeks after the procedure. This gives the pacemaker time to settle into position within your body. Patients with new pacemakers should avoid any sudden upper body movements that might unsettle the device. Eventually, your pacemaker will integrate with your body, but until that point, it’s wise to take it easy.

Finding A New Normal
Once your eight-week resting time has concluded, it will be time to get on with your life! You can slowly ease back into your regular exercise routine, or if you’ve never had a routine you can start one. The time just after your pacemaker implantation surgery is a great opportunity to capitalize on any newly-found energy and motivation to jumpstart a healthy new life. Another important thing to know about your new life with a pacemaker is that you must alert certain people in your life. Certainly, your close friends and family should be aware of your device, but you’ll also need to tell any and all medical professionals (including your dentist), and even the gal at TSA in the airport. Other than that, you’re free to carry on with your new lease on life!

Monitoring Your Device
So you may be wondering, “but how do I know if this thing is even on?” These days pacemakers are built to last a long time, but your cardiologist will still want to meet with you regularly to check that it continues to function properly. Make sure you take these opportunities to ask questions and be sure to carefully follow your cardiologist’s instructions as it pertains to any medications you are on.

Pacemaker implantation is a simple yet life-changing procedure. Once your device is in place and you’ve taken the necessary time to heal from your surgery, the sky’s the limit for you. If you’re concerned about your heart health and need a cardiologist who you can trust as a member of your team, contact us today.