Tips To Manage High Blood Pressure In Seniors
- Hypertension is a serious risk factor for several health conditions, like heart disease, stroke and kidney disease.
- The chances of developing hypertension increase with age, so seniors must follow a healthy lifestyle to prevent the condition.
- Monitoring blood pressure levels regularly helps in the early detection of conditions, prevents heart disease, and helps in stroke prevention.
- Seniors can manage their high blood pressure condition by eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, and taking presription medicines.
Blood pressure is the pressure that the circulating blood exerts on the walls of blood vessels. Hypertension or high blood pressure can increase the risk of developing health conditions like heart disease, stroke, kidney disease and degenerative diseases like dementia.
While medication can help in the management of high blood pressure, adopting healthy lifestyle changes for seniors is essential to help them maintain overall health and well-being.
If you are living with high blood pressure, here are practical tips and various ways to help manage high blood pressure in seniors.
Why should older adults monitor their blood pressure regularly
For effective management of high blood pressure in seniors, they need to monitor their blood pressure levels regularly. Also, seniors are more susceptible to high blood pressure, which can increase the risk of serious health problems.
Here are some more reasons why monitoring blood pressure is important for older adults:
1. Early Detection: High blood pressure often has no symptoms, so regular monitoring can help detect any changes in blood pressure levels early. Early detection is the key to preventing complications from high blood pressure.
2. Preventing Heart Disease: High blood pressure is a significant risk factor for heart disease, which is the leading cause of death in older adults. Monitoring blood pressure and taking steps to control it can help reduce the risk of heart disease.
3. Stroke Prevention: High blood pressure is also a significant risk factor for stroke. Monitoring blood pressure can help detect any changes early and take steps to prevent stroke.
4. Kidney Health: High blood pressure can damage the kidneys over time, leading to kidney disease. Regular blood pressure monitoring can help detect any changes early and taking steps to control blood pressure can help protect kidney function.
5. Medication Management: Many older adults take medication to manage their blood pressure. Regular monitoring can help ensure that medication is working correctly and that dosages are appropriate.
Factors that cause high blood pressure in seniors
With age, the blood vessels become less flexible and may stiffen, which can cause blood pressure to rise.
High blood pressure can run in families, and if a person's parents or other close relatives have hypertension, they may be at higher risk of developing it themselves.
3. Lifestyle factors
Unhealthy lifestyle habits, like consuming a diet high in sodium, saturated and trans fat; being overweight or obese, not exercising regularly, excessive alcohol consumption and smoking can all contribute to high blood pressure.
4. Medical conditions
Certain medical conditions such as diabetes, sleep apnea, kidney disease, and thyroid disorders can increase a person's risk of developing hypertension.
Some medications, like non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), decongestants, and some prescription medications for depression and anxiety, can raise blood pressure.
Chronic stress can increase blood pressure, so finding healthy ways to manage stress is essential.
Seniors must be aware of the above factors and work with their healthcare providers to manage their blood pressure.
How can seniors manage high blood pressure
Making lifestyle changes and taking prescribed medications can help in the management of blood pressure and reduce the risk of serious health problems.
1. Eat a healthy diet
Seniors should eat a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein while limiting saturated fats, cholesterol, and salt.
2. Exercise regularly
Regular physical activity like brisk walking or swimming can help lower blood pressure.
3. Maintain a healthy weight
Seniors who are overweight or obese should aim to lose weight to help lower blood pressure.
4. Manage stress
Chronic stress can increase blood pressure, so seniors should find healthy ways to manage stress, such as meditation or yoga.
5. Quit smoking
Smoking can increase blood pressure and elevate the risk of heart disease and stroke, so seniors should quit smoking if they are smokers.
6. Take medication as prescribed
Seniors who are prescribed medication to manage their blood pressure should take it as directed by their healthcare provider.
7. Regularly monitor blood pressure
Seniors should have their blood pressure checked regularly by their healthcare provider and should also consider monitoring their blood pressure at home with a blood pressure monitor.
A blood pressure reading typically has two different values. The higher value is systolic blood pressure (pressure exerted when the heart contracts), and the lower one is diastolic blood pressure (pressure exerted when the heart relaxes). Normal blood pressure is in the range of 120/80. Diagnosis of hypertension can only be made by a treating physician, and one single high reading doesn’t imply hypertension.
8. Manage underlying medical conditions
Seniors with underlying medical conditions that can contribute to high blood pressure, such as kidney disease or sleep apnea, should work with their healthcare provider to manage these conditions.
Living and coping with high blood pressure can be challenging for seniors, but with the right preventive and treatment measures, it is possible to manage high blood pressure in seniors and maintain good health and well-being.
By making healthy lifestyle changes, like eating a balanced diet, exercising regularly, managing stress, and quitting smoking, seniors can lower their blood pressure, reduce the risk of serious health problems and experience healthy ageing.
It is also essential for seniors to work closely with their healthcare provider, take medication as prescribed, and regularly monitor their blood pressure. By proactively managing their blood pressure, seniors can lead happy and healthy lives and enjoy their golden years to the fullest.
It is never too late to take steps to improve your health, so start today and take control of your blood pressure.
Did you like our Article?
Leave a Comment