High Blood Pressure, also known as Hypertension, is called the silent killer because often it does not present with any obvious symptoms. Patients sometimes go years without being diagnosed with high blood pressure because of the lack of signs. High Blood Pressure or Hypertension as it is otherwise known is when the pressure in your blood is higher in your arteries then it needs to be. This can lead to all sorts of potential problem one being that it is an extra strain on your heart because it has to work harder to pump to circulate your blood.
Untreated high blood pressure can be dangerous as over the long term as it can make you more at risk of suffering a heart attack, stroke, Heart Failure and Dementia. For this reason it is important to have your blood pressure checked regularly at your physician’s office or the pharmacy.
The good news is that high blood pressure for most people is easily controlled through diet, exercise and medication. And through the management of your high blood pressure we can prevent further complications further down the road. Whether you need an adjustment in your medication or helpful lifestyle tips we at iCare Pharmacy can help optimize your therapy to reach your blood pressure goals while minimizing any potential side effects from your treatment.
Blood Pressure Cuff Placement
You want your Blood Pressure Cuff to be placed just above the crease of you elbow with the cord running down the center of your arm. It should be placed as such that the cord is at the bottom of the cuff. The importance of the placement of the cuff is important because where the cord is coming off of the cuff is where the sensor in the blood pressure cuff is and we are trying to get a reading of an artery that runs down the center of your arm.
Measuring Blood pressure
When measuring your blood pressure at home or at the physician's office or even the pharmacy there are a variety of tips to remember.
Blood pressure consists of two number in regards to measurement. It consists of a diastolic as well as a systolic measurement. The systolic pressure is the pressure on your arteries when your heart contracts while the diastolic is the pressure on your arteries is when your heart is at rest and is filling with blood between contractions. Excellent blood pressure for patients is at 120/80. This measurement is read as 120 systolic and 80 diastolic. Normal blood pressure is around 130/80. 140/90 or higher is considered high blood pressure.
Other Blood Pressure Measuring Tips:When taking your blood pressure make sure both your feet are flush against the floor and your legs are not crossed.
Do not talk during taking your blood pressure.
Do not take your blood pressure in front of the Television or while looking at devices as anything you may be viewing my elicit an emotional response which may affect your blood pressure.
Do not take your blood pressure if you are in a moment of stress or you have just recently finished some vigorous activity such as exercise. Stress can increase your blood pressure. You should also wait at least 30 minutes after exercise before checking your blood pressure.
Do not check your blood pressure after consuming caffeine. Caffeine can elevate your blood pressure for 3 hours so it may be better to wait before checking your blood pressure after consuming caffeine.
In terms of diet the best recommendation is to follow the DASH diet which is a low sodium diet. Salt naturally draws water to itself so if you have higher levels of salt in your diet it will naturally draw more water into your blood and as a result increase its pressure. The DASH diet recommends higher levels of fruits and vegetables in your diet. This diet will encourage you to eat less salt and possibly also result in some weight loss. Losing even 10 pounds from your current weight itself will help in regards to reducing your blood pressure. As far as Lifestyle goes it is important to reduce your alcohol intake and also to quit smoking. You should not have more than 2 drinks per day to help control your blood pressure. Smoking not only can increase your blood pressure but also damages the lining of your walls.
Exercise is important in the management of your Blood pressure as it makes your heart stronger. If you heart is stronger then it will be able to circulate your blood with less effort which reduces the amount of pressure in your arteries.
It is not always possible to control your blood pressure with changes in your lifestyle and diet alone. You may still require medication to help to reduce your blood pressure. There are a variety of different medications that are available to treat high blood pressure. Choosing the best one will depend on your medical history as well as your own preference in regards to cost and potential side effects. And do not be alarmed if you need to be on multiple medications to manage your blood pressure as this is not unusual. It is often safer and more effective to add another medication to your regimen to lower your blood pressure rather then increase the strength of a single medication.
If you need help in picking an agent that bests suite your medical history and needs to manage your treatment or just need some friendly advice do not hesitate to contact us today.