Managing Symptoms


Learn more about Daily To-Do List's for Managing Heart Failure

Follow these daily habits to help you manage your symptoms. Find a printable version of this list here. Feel free to ask your Hopeful Heart nurse if you have any further questions about these daily habits.

  1. Check your weight each day. Thinking about getting a new scale? Click here first.
  2. Check blood pressure (if you have a cuff). Thinking about getting a blood pressure cuff? Look here first.
  3. Stick to a low sodium and diabetic diet (if needed).
  4. Take medications as prescribed.
    • Have trouble affording your medications, or simply looking to save money? Look here.
    • Sometimes forget to take your medications? Click here.
  5. Make and keep follow-up appointments with primary care doctors and cardiologists.
  6. Exercise and/or go to cardiac rehab.
  7. Sleep.
  8. Stop smoking. Check out the PA Quit Line here.

Check your weight each day

When you have heart failure, you need to watch for changes in your weight. A sudden weight gain can mean more fluid is building up in your body and your kidneys cannot handle the extra load. Click here to learn more about how to weigh yourself.

It is best to weigh yourself:

  • At the same time each day
  • Using the same scale
  • Wearing the same thing each time you weigh yourself or wearing nothing at all
  • Without shoes
  • In the morning, after you go to the bathroom.
  • Before breakfast.
  • Before you have anything to drink.

Call your doctor if you notice a sudden weight gain. In general, call if you gain 3 pounds within 3 days, think "3 in 3".

(from the American College of Cardiology,

Check blood pressure

For some tips on how to take your blood pressure, click here.