Many elderly people develop high blood pressure as they age. Sometimes it can be hereditary, but it can often occur because of the way the body’s network of blood vessels changes and becomes thicker. Consequently, making the body work harder to pump blood throughout the body.
If your parent has been diagnosed with high blood pressure, he is not alone. High blood pressure, or hypertension, is a major health problem common in older adults.
With a good plan created with his doctor and including his senior home care team, you can help him manage his blood pressure. Then, it won’t lead to other complications, such as heart disease, vascular dementia, eye problems, and kidney disease.
Depending on his blood pressure level, the doctor may prescribe medicine to help lower his blood pressure. In addition, he will probably suggest lifestyle changes that your loved one can implement at home. Sometimes lifestyle changes can seem much more difficult than simply taking a pill. But those lifestyle changes can often affect other health conditions and help your parent live a more healthy and active life.
Here are some changes your elderly loved one can look at to help his blood pressure levels stay within the safe range.
Eat a Heart-Healthy Diet
It can be hard to change a lifetime of eating habits, but with good preparation (such as buying the right foods at the market and then having them ready to eat at home), it can be easier than you think. Many doctors recommend the DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) eating plan to help reduce blood pressure. It consists of a balanced diet of vegetables, fruits, grains, protein, dairy, and oils. If your loved one has a senior home care provider who helps him shop, that senior home care provider can help him pick up the right foods for this eating plan.
Work with your loved one’s doctor to help him participate in moderate activity, such as brisk walking or swimming, for at least 2.5 hours a week. It can lower high blood pressure.
Reduce Salt Intake
As a person ages, the body and blood pressure become more sensitive to salt (sodium), which is added to many foods during processing or preparation. Limiting your loved one’s amount of salt intake each day may help him manage his blood pressure.
Stay at a Healthy Weight
Being overweight increases the risk of high blood pressure. On the next doctor visit, have your parent talk to his doctor about what a healthy weight is for him. The doctor may suggest ways to get to that weight. Which will probably include the other steps listed above to manage blood pressure.
Get a Good Night’s Sleep
If your loved one has sleep apnea (where he stops breathing while sleeping), it can increase his risk. His doctor may recommend some treatments to help him sleep better.
Indeed, this may look different for everyone. However, if your loved one struggles with a lot of stress in his life. Help him find relaxing and calming practices to keep those stress levels down.
Together, you can help your loved one manage and control his blood pressure.
If you or an aging loved one are considering hiring Senior Home Care in Glendale, AZ, please contact the caring staff at Blessings for Seniors Companion Care at (623) 594-0819.
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