A Quick Guide to Managing Hypertension in Elderly People
Generally, hypertension in elderly people does not show any symptoms that are easy to notice. However, hypertension (also called high blood pressure) can lead to several health issues. For this reason, it is also called the silent killer. It can for example increase their risk of suffering a stroke or heart attack and the chances of developing kidney problems.
What are the causes of hypertension in elderly people?
As a matter of fact, our blood pressure increases naturally as we grow older. Many cases of hypertension in elderly people can actually not be traced to one specific cause. Though, in certain elderly people it is caused by medication or some other medical issue.
What is normal blood pressure in the elderly?
The ideal blood pressure is specific to the needs of an individual. It is important to remember that the needs of elderly people are also different from the general population. So, the recommended blood pressure reading for people older than 60 is below 150/90 mmHg. Though, as the requirements of elderly people’s health are unique, there are no clear-cut rules.
How do you check blood pressure in the elderly?
This might sound like a trivial issue to address. Though, there are a few key pointers to ensure that the reading is accurate. As it is normal for blood pressure to rise and fall throughout the day, it must be checked a couple of times on different days. Hypertension in elderly people can only be diagnosed when repeated readings were high.
Also, to ensure accurate results, the patient should not drink coffee or smoke a cigarette 30 minutes before taking a reading.
Which lifestyle changes can you make?
So, what happens if hypertension in elderly people has been diagnosed? Fortunately, there are many lifestyle changes that can help! This means that medication is not always necessary.
For starters, if the patient smokes, it is never too late to break this bad habit. Also, patients who are overweight should try to lose weight.
If weight and smoking are not problem areas, there are a few dietary changes that the patient can make. These changes include limiting the alcohol and salt intake, while increasing the daily fruit and vegetables servings.
A medical professional might recommend that you start to take medication that will help you to improve your blood pressure when these lifestyle changes were not enough.
Discussing high blood pressure with a therapist
It is important to discuss high blood pressure with your therapist who will be able to give you a good target blood pressure that you should aim for. Your therapist will also help you to create an action plan.
It is important that medication must be started slowly and if necessary increased cautiously. This way a sudden drop in blood pressure can be prevented.
Then, remember to schedule a follow-up meeting to see if all the hard work has indeed paid off!
At Fairview Rehab & Nursing Home in Queens hypertension in elderly people is managed in a nurturing environment. What sets us apart is that the focus is also on refreshing the mind and spirit. Thus, at Fairview managing hypertension in elderly people is just the start of healing…Contact us if you would like to learn more about us.