How Skilled Nursing Homes Care for Seniors with High Blood Pressure
We are prone to diseases and illnesses as we age. One common problem is hypertension or high blood pressure. Studies show that almost half of the older adults in America have hypertension. It is often referred to as the silent killer because it is difficult to notice the symptoms. This is why the staff in nursing homes are trained to provide specialized care for their residents that have high blood pressure. Before we discuss how they can help seniors with hypertension, let’s take a detailed look at what this medical condition is all about including the causes and risks involved.
What is High Blood Pressure?
Blood pressure refers to the blood’s force as it pushes against the walls of the arteries when circulating in the body. It is broken down into two types:
- Diastolic Pressure – is when the heart is at rest amidst beats, and the blood pressure falls.
- Systolic Pressure – is when the heart beats and is the highest when pumping the blood.
When a person’s blood pressure is more than what is considered normal, they are said to have high blood pressure.
Normal Blood Pressure for Older Adults
Your blood pressure (BP) will fluctuate throughout the day and is the lowest when you are sleeping. It usually increases when you are nervous, excited, or active. The standard systolic and diastolic pressures for the general population are as follows:
|Normal||Less than 120||Less than 80|
|Elevated||120-129||Less than 80|
|Stage 1 Hypertension||130-139||80-89|
|Stage 2 Hypertension||140 or more||90 or more|
|Very High Blood Pressure|
(Seek emergency assistance)
|More than 180||More than 120|
What Causes High Blood Pressure in Seniors?
Our BP tends to rise as we age. The common reasons for high BP include the following:
- Eating excessive amounts of salt.
- Consuming large quantities of alcohol.
- Minimal or insufficient physical activity.
- Exposure to stress and anxiety.
- Certain medicines can also increase your BP level.
Preparing for A Blood Pressure Test
People can have hypertension for years without knowing, which is why it helps to get yourself checked by a doctor regularly. They will help you relax and ask you to sit upright before measuring your BP. They will also ask you to do the following:
- Not drink coffee before the test
- Avoid smoking
- Encourage you to use the restroom
- Ask you to sit calmly for a few minutes
How Skilled Nursing Facilities Treat High Blood Pressure
The experts providing skilled nursing services are aware that following a healthy lifestyle, including having well-balanced meals can help you keep your blood pressure in check even in your senior years. Some of the measures they take to maintain your BP at a normal rate include:
- Engaging you in regular physical activity such as walking and exercising
- Ensuring you have nutritious meals on time every day
- Cutting down on your intake of salt
- Limiting your alcohol consumption
- Helping you to avoid smoking
- Advising you to consult a specialist when required
We Have the Best Nursing Homes Near Providence
At The Holiday Retirement, we have trained staff to help our senior residents with high blood pressure. We ensure that they are comfortable and healthy by providing nutritious and well-balanced meals, arranging regular activities to help them remain physically active, and regularly monitoring their BP levels.