Why should young people track their blood pressure?
We often get the question, "Do I need to be tracking my blood pressure even though I am young?" Short answer: Yes, of course! High blood pressure (Hypertension) doesn’t discriminate by age. In fact, almost half of adults over the age of 20 have elevated or high blood pressure. According to the CDC, about 1 in 4 men and nearly 1 in 5 women age 35 - 44 have high blood pressure.
But why should you care about high blood pressure while you’re young?
Taking care of your blood pressure now can help you:
- Have ageless skin: there is a direct link between lower/higher blood pressure and the speed at which skin ages. Specifically saggy or baggy face skin is the feature most impacted by higher blood pressure. Also, studies have shown links between deep forehead wrinkles and the development of heart disease. Time to include your bp check in your skin regimen!
- Keep your luscious locks: losing your hair could be the first visible sign of heart disease and linked to high blood pressure.
- Stay sharp as a thumbtack: high blood pressure can have a long-term negative effect on mental function. It can reduce attention, learning, memory and decision-making skills.
- Avoid loss of hearing: high blood pressure has been shown to accelerate age-related hearing loss by restricting blood flow to the inner ear and to the regions of the brain involved with hearing. Don’t play your bp checks by ear!
So what should you do?
Here’s the good news! There are simple steps you can take to control your blood pressure:
- Know your numbers: Measuring your blood pressure is an important step toward keeping a healthy blood pressure. Tracking your blood pressure at home on a regular basis and understanding what your low and high readings mean can help lower your overall blood pressure.
- Talk to your doctor as recommended: Your physician can help prescribe and adjust your medication based on your blood pressure report and help with your overall health.
- Small steps turn into lasting changes:
- Create reminders in the Hello Heart app to check your BP and to take blood pressure medication on time!
- Add simple healthy swaps to your everyday meals - i.e. switch from baked goods to dark chocolate!
- Learn relaxation methods to address stress!
- Just add 5 minutes of physical activity to your day - i.e. bust out a few dance moves to your favorite song while your coffee or tea are brewing in the morning!