Hypertension as you age

What about dietary approaches to stop hypertension?

The DASH diet involves consuming fruits and vegetables, lean animal products, low-fat dairy products, nuts, and seeds. There is an emphasis on consuming fresh food and avoiding more processed products and foods high in salt.

What is blood pressure measurement?

Blood Pressure is measured by two numbers. An example of a blood pressure reading is 130 over 80 mm of mercury. The first number measures blood pressure when your heart squeezes or contracts. This is Systolic blood pressure. The second number measures your blood pressure when your heart rests between contractions, this is Diastolic pressure.

Why blood pressure is common in the elderly?

As you age, your vascular system changes. There is a decrease in the elastic tissue in your arteries causing them to become stiffer and less compliant. Common medical conditions that can lead to hypertension include sleep apnea and kidney disease. Genetic factors, lifestyle factors, and medication-related and other medical issues like diabetes, obesity, smoking, and high cholesterol values play a major role.

What about salt intake?

The American Heart Association recommends less than 2.3 grams of sodium per day for all adults, not just for those with hypertension.

How often blood pressure should be monitored?

All individuals who are above 18 years old should get their blood pressure monitored at least once a year. Those with high blood pressure should check their blood pressure on a daily basis and keep a record of the same. Over-the-counter digital blood pressure instruments are not always trustworthy. Sitting down relax for 5 minutes, then take down your blood pressure 3 times. In case the readings are the same, then consider your instrument trustworthy.

 What about medications in the elderly?

The medications are almost tailor-made for each individual. The selection of drugs depends upon other illnesses. This includes diabetes, previous heart issues, previous strokes, kidney disorders, the presence of proteins in urine, and obesity or fragility.

What should be the normal blood pressure at the age of 75 years?

A slightly higher reading up to 14/90 is acceptable, though a blood pressure of 120/80 or less should be the ideal goal. Dr Jay Deshmukh Physician Hypertension may not cause symptoms at all times. However, it is important to bring down the numbers to normal values so as to prevent brain stroke, heart attacks kidney failure, and dementia. Regular monitoring and appropriate medications are the key to preventing these complications.

Should blood pressure be taken in a standing position?

At times, the blood pressure may fall substantially on standing as you age and have underlying treatment for Parkinson’s disease or prostate enlargement or long-standing diabetes… A fall of 20 mm of systolic blood pressure in standing is considered significant. In the elderly, the blood pressure tends to fall in a standing position at night during your visit to the washroom.

Why blood pressure control is of utmost importance?

Being a silent disease, it cannot be diagnosed clinically unless measured. Even a very high blood pressure reading may not cause symptoms. The number of individuals with heart attacks, paralysis, and kidney failure is rising at a frighteningly high rate. In most, the underlying cause is uncontrolled hypertension or diabetes or cholesterol or excessive alcohol and smoking.

Categories : Health

Dr Jay Deshmukh is Chief Physician and Director, Sunflower Hospital, Nagpur Honorary Physician to Honorable Governor of Maharashtra and PondicherryCentral. Dr Jay Deshmukh is an M.B.B.S., M.C.P.S., F.C.P.S., M.N.A.M.S., MD From Internal Medicine – Bombay and New Delhi.

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