What’s your morning routine? Do you always get ready for bed the same way? We often find ourselves stuck on auto-pilot when it comes to daily tasks like maintaining personal hygiene or taking our vitamins and medication. Have you noticed that you tend to rush through the things that could make a real difference in your general health and well being?
We may ignore our blood pressure because it’s invisible. One of the tasks we build into our morning and bedtime routine is to measure our blood pressure. This vital sign can warn you of heart disease, including the likelihood of suffering from a heart attack or stroke.
What is blood pressure?
When your heart beats, it pumps blood throughout your body to provide it energy and oxygen. As the blood travels through your veins and arteries, it pushes against the sides (walls) of the blood vessels. Blood pressure is the force and the rate of the blood travelling through the blood vessels.
Taking note of your blood pressure can help your doctor diagnose blocked arteries, hardened artery walls, irregular heart rate, and various other heart diseases. The Canadian Heart and Stroke Foundation website is a valuable resource for anyone who wants to understand heart disease. Learn more about heart disease here.
It can be difficult to decipher the meaning of the numbers on the reading, especially when we don’t really understand terms like systolic and diastolic. We like how the American Heart Association illustrates blood pressure readings so they’re easy to understand. Click here to see their chart.
You may have been born with a heart condition (congenital), or you may have developed heart disease as you aged. If you notice anything different, it’s important to communicate this with your doctor. It can be as simple as experiencing shortness of breath or dizziness when you exercise.
Your doctor may ask you if there is a family history of certain diseases and it can help them manage your health care efficiently. Genetics can be a major factor in whether or not you are at risk for heart disease. Consider asking your family members about their medical history. As uncomfortable as these conversations can be, they are necessary.
Heart disease is preventable and manageable. There are many ways you can help decrease the risk by making small lifestyle changes. Some of you may need to make bigger changes, but we’re confident that once you begin feeling better, it will get easier.
Tips to help you maintain healthy blood pressure
- Measure your blood pressure at home twice daily and visit your doctor regularly
- Try to reduce your sodium intake by replacing salt with spices that add flavour
- Eat healthy foods
- Exercise daily, even if it’s just a walk or a short workout with your physiotherapist
- Avoid or limit alcoholic drinks and caffeine
- Reduce stress by making time for activities you enjoy
How can Retire-At-Home Halton help?
Our team can show you how you can measure your own blood pressure using your own device. Most medical supply stores carry several models, and can help you figure out which one suits your needs.
Likewise, we can set up a care plan that includes measuring and monitoring your blood pressure. We use professional equipment and keep records of your vitals. This way, we can observe any changes in your health and take action immediately.
Home care in Halton is accessible and we can work with you to customize a health care plan that you and your family can afford. We can help you understand the OHIP benefits for which you qualify, and how you can maximize your private insurance benefits.
- available 24 hours
- mobile physiotherapy (through the Work-Fit Total Therapy program)
- Connect Care Medical Alert
- Nursing care services
- Personal Care services
- Home Support and Housekeeping services
We provide home care services in the following areas: Halton, including Georgetown, Burlington, Oakville, Milton and Mississauga North. If you would like to discuss your individual needs (whether or not you’re a senior) contact Retire-At-Home Services Halton for a complimentary in-home consultation at 1-888-509-9394 or 905-864-9020. You can also use our online contact form or our live chat option.