Hypertension Management for Seniors – Definition & Detailed Explanation – Chronic Illness Management for Elderly Glossary

What is hypertension in seniors?

Hypertension, also known as high blood pressure, is a common condition that occurs when the force of blood against the walls of the arteries is consistently too high. In seniors, hypertension is defined as having a systolic blood pressure of 140 mmHg or higher and/or a diastolic blood pressure of 90 mmHg or higher. Hypertension is a major risk factor for heart disease, stroke, and other serious health conditions, making it important to manage and control in seniors.

What are the risk factors for hypertension in seniors?

There are several risk factors that can contribute to the development of hypertension in seniors. These include age, family history of hypertension, obesity, lack of physical activity, high salt intake, excessive alcohol consumption, smoking, and certain medical conditions such as diabetes and kidney disease. It is important for seniors to be aware of these risk factors and take steps to reduce their likelihood of developing hypertension.

How is hypertension diagnosed and monitored in seniors?

Hypertension is typically diagnosed through regular blood pressure screenings. Seniors should have their blood pressure checked at least once a year, or more frequently if they have risk factors for hypertension. In addition to in-office blood pressure measurements, seniors can also monitor their blood pressure at home using a home blood pressure monitor. This can help provide a more accurate picture of their blood pressure levels over time.

What lifestyle changes can help manage hypertension in seniors?

Making lifestyle changes is an important part of managing hypertension in seniors. Some key lifestyle changes that can help lower blood pressure include maintaining a healthy weight, eating a balanced diet low in salt and saturated fats, engaging in regular physical activity, quitting smoking, limiting alcohol consumption, and managing stress. Seniors should work with their healthcare provider to develop a personalized plan for managing their hypertension through lifestyle changes.

What medications are commonly used to treat hypertension in seniors?

In addition to lifestyle changes, medications are often used to treat hypertension in seniors. Some common medications used to lower blood pressure include diuretics, beta-blockers, ACE inhibitors, angiotensin II receptor blockers, calcium channel blockers, and alpha-blockers. Seniors may need to try different medications or combinations of medications to find the most effective treatment for their hypertension. It is important for seniors to take their medications as prescribed and to follow up with their healthcare provider regularly to monitor their blood pressure levels.

What are the potential complications of uncontrolled hypertension in seniors?

Uncontrolled hypertension can lead to serious complications in seniors. These can include heart disease, stroke, kidney damage, vision loss, and cognitive decline. Seniors with uncontrolled hypertension are also at higher risk for developing other health conditions such as diabetes and peripheral artery disease. It is important for seniors to work with their healthcare provider to manage and control their hypertension to reduce their risk of these complications.