Living with high blood pressure places a significant strain on your body and can cause serious health problems. For men and women living in and around University Place, Washington, and the greater Tacoma area, the team at University Place Medical Clinic offers comprehensive screening and treatment for high blood pressure. Book an appointment today online or by phone to learn your numbers and how they can affect your overall health and wellness.
Every time your heart beats it pushes blood through your arteries and into the smaller blood vessels throughout your body. That process places pressure on the walls of your blood vessels. Blood pressure is measured with two numbers, the first (systolic) measures the pressure present during heartbeats, and the second (diastolic) measures the pressure in the rest between heartbeats.
Your arteries are incredibly resilient, strong, and elastic. However, undue pressure can damage your artery walls, leaving you at risk of multiple health problems. Some common examples include:
This is far from a comprehensive list. High blood pressure (hypertension) can affect virtually every system in your body.
When it comes to hypertension, the best treatment is prevention. There are many ways you can keep your blood pressure at healthy levels. The most important step is to schedule routine medical exams so you can track your blood pressure over time.
Your diet plays a huge role in high blood pressure. Choosing a diet rich in fruits and vegetables is a great place to begin. You should also limit sodium, and it’s important to understand that table salt is usually not the culprit. Processed foods are packed with sodium and should be avoided as much as possible.
Staying active is another important part of lowering blood pressure. Just 30 minutes a day of moderate exercise like walking can lower your blood pressure significantly. Find ways to incorporate physical activity into each and every day.
Finally, getting enough quality sleep and reducing stress can help keep your blood pressure at healthy levels. There are many tools to accomplish these goals and plenty of things you can do on your own to achieve results.
Medication may play a role in your treatment path. There are drugs that improve kidney function, slow your heartbeat, prevent tightening of blood vessels, and relax blood vessel walls.
A combination approach is often used in managing high blood pressure, so you may need more than one medication. Your drug therapy might also change over time as your body responds to treatment.
If you smoke, you should work with your doctor to find a smoking cessation program that can help you quit for good. Smoking increases your risk of heart disease and many other health issues.
At-home blood pressure monitoring can go a long way toward getting your numbers in check. Ask your doctor about how to take your own readings at home and tailor your treatment as needed.
When you’re ready to begin, book an appointment online or by phone.