Sioux Falls, SD
The American Heart Association wants you to be aware of new hypertension guidelines.
The big change means more patients are likely to be diagnosed with hypertension.
"Normal blood pressure has been less than 120, systolic blood pressure. And then between 120 and 140 has been considered elevated blood pressure. And above 140 is where you start treating high blood pressure," Dr. Orvar Jonsson said.
Now, the bar is being lowered. People coming in at 130 over 80, with either number being elevated, will need treatment.
"A lot of patients are actually pretty concerned about it. With cardiology one of our main points is blood pressure, and a lot of our patients are very well with keeping track of their blood pressure so they want to be sure this doesn't impact them themselves," Jenny Vanthul said.
I sat down with Vanthul to have my blood pressure taken to see if the new guidelines would have an impact on me.
"So you actually have excellent blood pressure. 118 over 82.," Vanthul said.
But she says not everyone is that lucky, which has some patients wondering how to regulate their blood pressure.
"Their medications, and making sure that they're doing everything adequately to keep it to what is now considered the new normal," Vanthul said.
If you're worried about your own numbers, doctors say making an appointment to get yours checked is the best thing to do.
"High blood pressure is called the silent killer for a reason, because you don't feel it,"Jonsson said.
Doctors also recommend living a healthy lifestyle to lower your risk.
"People can lose weight; that's very effective in lowering blood pressure. Cut down the salt intake. Exercise has been shown to lower blood pressure, also reduce the amount of alcohol use," Jonsson said.
To see a detailed list the new guidelines, click here.
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Wellness & Nutrition