Most people develop more physical issues as they age than when they were younger, including pain in their joints, extra weight around their waist, and blurry vision in their eyes.
There’s another physical problem whose likelihood increases as you age that you may have without even realizing it — and it may be more dangerous than other issues you do know about: high blood pressure.
Sometimes called “the silent killer,” high blood pressure can lead to other significant diseases. Thankfully, the team at Physicians Medical Primary Care is here to help you diagnose and treat high blood pressure.
What is high blood pressure?
The measure of how hard your blood pushes against the walls of your arteries as your heart pumps blood is called your blood pressure. High blood pressure occurs when that pressure is consistently too high for an extended period.
It usually doesn’t present with any symptoms and is diagnosed simply by taking your blood pressure reading. The bad news is that if left untreated, it can lead to serious health problems, such as heart disease, stroke, eye problems, and kidney disease, among others.
The good news is that high blood pressure is fairly straightforward to treat and can be controlled in most cases.
How does age affect it?
Age absolutely affects blood pressure. Your body’s network of blood vessels (your vascular system) becomes stiffer as you age, which causes your blood pressure to increase. This can happen even if you’re in excellent health.
Other risk factors for high blood pressure include your lifestyle and family history.
What can you do about it?
Once you’re diagnosed with high blood pressure, your doctor will encourage you to change any lifestyle factors contributing to the problem. This includes aiming for a healthy weight, exercising, cutting down on salt, eating a heart-healthy diet, quitting smoking, and getting good sleep. Implementing these healthy habits can make a world of difference.
Your doctor may also consider prescription medication to lower your blood pressure. Medication won’t address the root cause of your high blood pressure like lifestyle changes will, but it can stabilize you while you make other adjustments.
If you suspect you may have high blood pressure or haven’t had your blood pressure checked in a long time, it’s time to make an appointment at Physician’s Medical Primary Care. Especially if you’re older, the time to check is now! Call one of our three locations, or use our online booking tool to choose your appointment time.