Despite a slow start, the healthcare industry has really embraced social media. Now, hospitals and healthcare providers around the country incorporate social tools into their patient outreach strategies. Video, in particular, has been a game-changer for many businesses, and the healthcare industry is no exception.More
High blood pressure is a common medical concern. It’s often referred to as “the silent killer” because it causes much damage to the heart before symptoms are felt. Luckily, it’s easy to diagnose with regular wellness checks. Annual wellness exams are generally covered by insurance, too.
What is normal?
In a normally healthy person, high blood pressure (hypertension) is defined as > 140 (systolic value)/ 90 (diastolic value) from two random readings. Mild hypertension is defined as systolic value of 140-159 and diastolic value of 90-99.
Systolic pressure measures the peak pressure in the arteries when the ventricles contract, and diastolic pressure measures the minimum amount of pressure in the arteries when the ventricles are filling with blood. Both numbers are important, and any elevation in either number is used to diagnose hypertension.
If you have mild hypertension, you may wonder if you should start prescription therapy. Evidence shows that treating mild hypertension reduces your risk for a heart attack in the future. But you have options to try before starting one of the many pharmaceuticals.
- Yoga has shown to improve blood pressure if practiced regularly once daily for 6-12 months.
- Daily meditation for at least 20 minutes has shown to reduce blood pressure.
- Garlic has a modest effect on your blood pressure and can be found in pill form.
- Fish Oil lowers triglycerides, which improves blood vessel health, which in turn reduces cardiovascular risk.
Consult with your provider to see what therapy is best for you.
Monitoring your blood pressure is an important aspect of staying healthy. Everyone should have at least one general wellness check (which screens for medical problems such as high blood pressure) with a provider annually.
With the enactment of the Affordable Care Act, most insurers are now required to cover an annual wellness exam. Check with your insurer to confirm you benefits prior to making an appointment.
Anna Gunderson, PA-C is a nationally certified Physician Assistant. She works at the Driggs and Victor Health Clinics and is currently accepting new patients. Call (208) 354-2302 to make an appointment or visit tvhcare.org for more information on the services offered at Teton Valley Health Care.More
Failure (fāl yǝr) noun
1. Lack of success synonyms: nonfulfillment, defeat, foundering, debacle
2. Informal: flop, megaflop, dud, ne’er do well, dud, busted flush
I’ve been quiet on the blog lately and usually when I’m quiet, it’s because something has happened that must be processed through my 5 phases of Realization:
- Inner scolding
- Rationalization aka Flimsy Excuse-making
- Acceptance along with inner scolding
- Realization = moving forward, along with occasional bursts of inner scolding
The reality is this: I did not meet my wellness goal of lowering my BMI. In fact, I’ve stayed exactly the same in terms of BMI.
- Ms. Disbelief says, I can’t believe 12 months have gone by!
- If I’d shown some willpower, I’d be in great shape today says the Scolder.
- At least my BMI didn’t get worse, according to Rationalizing Ann.
- It’s my own fault for not taking this seriously, now I need to commit and try again.
- Realization: I have the tools, I know what I need to do, I’ve learned a lot about what motivates me and now I’ll put it all together and succeed. I can’t continue to be a busted flush ne’er do well.
There’s a little trick I play on myself that’s worth about 100,000 calories. (This is top secret information.) This is what happens: Let’s pretend I’ve had a good day of exercising and eating well. I praise myself. I prowl around the kitchen, making a mental list of the locations of all of the high calorie foods. Then, I wait for my husband and teenagers to clear out. When the coast is clear, I quietly pocket a cookie, scarf a spoonful of ice cream, or chug a chocolate milk. Then I scoot off, almost smug in my knowledge that I’ve gotten away with it again!
And what exactly have I gotten away with? NOTHING. While I’ve been able to host secret hoovering sessions, the resulting pounds are visible to everyone. Somehow, eating non-healthy foods in private is similar to the belief that breaking up a cookie into small pieces reduces the caloric intake: No witnesses, no calories. It never happened folks! My capacity for magical thinking is boundless.
Over the past month, I’ve been declining unhealthy foods and replacing them with better choices. I’ve skipped the cinnamon rolls and taken the watermelon slices instead. I’ve made myself get out and walk more, do more yard work and generally be wiser about how I spend my hours. I KNOW what I need to do, I’ve LEARNED how to build and use the tools toward better health, and having that knowledge is simply not enough.
If you’ve been following my blog, you know how much I like quotes. Here’s a good one by Legouvé “To live is not to learn, but to apply.”
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