High blood pressure affects up to 50% of the Canadian population at some point in our lives. If left unmanaged, it can lead to all kinds of serious negative side-effects.
That said, one of the worst things about high blood pressure is that its symptoms can be largely invisible. The so-called ‘silent killer’ is responsible for quietly eating away at blood vessels and the body’s vital organs. Patients that suffer and survive sudden heart attacks or strokes are often shocked because they felt perfectly fine outwardly.
“The most frightening thing about high blood pressure is that most people simply feel nothing even if there is a serious problem”, commented Singapore-based cardiologist Dr. Michael MacDonald. “With this in mind, I always tell my patients to check their blood pressure regularly. They can do this themselves without leaving home, or through their doctor.”
If high blood pressure is found to be present, the next step is to lower it as a matter of urgency. When discovered, the immediate risk is usually quite low as the main danger comes from damage to arteries and organs over time. What is most effective against high blood pressure is a series of smaller, frequent actions to address the problem.
“The good news is that some of the most effective remedies against high blood pressure are easy steps people can take in their daily lives” continued Dr. MacDonald. “Diet is a big part of what people can change to rectify high blood pressure. Eating more vegetables combined with a reduction in salt and increased potassium intake is a great start.”
Getting out and about is the next step. “It may sound like a broken record for a doctor to be saying eat a more balanced diet and exercise more often, but we say these things for many reasons” added Dr. MacDonald. “One of the main reasons is to keep blood pressure low and at healthy levels.
“With better diet and exercise comes weight loss. Excess weight is one of the main causes of high blood pressure. Processed food and too much alcohol are also known to be contributory factors.”
Alongside these external factors, stress is another major cause of high blood pressure. This may come from conditions outside of the individual’s control. “Although it may sound obvious, people should always try to limit their exposure to high-pressure situations. Talking to people is a great remedy. And if stress is work-related, a conversation with a manager can be a big help.”
One of the most important things to consider when formulating a plan to monitor high blood pressure is that it is almost impossible to notice without the use of a machine. Arm-fitting devices are the most accurate, but wrist monitors can also give an indication. “It is a common myth that high blood pressure makes people more tired, summarized Dr. MacDonald. “While this is not true, it is the case that low amounts of sleep can increase blood pressure. In short, people need to eat and sleep well as well as exercising regularly to avoid high blood pressure”.
About Dr. Michael MacDonald
Dr. Michael MacDonald is a British cardiologist that has practiced in Singapore since 2015. Having worked in Changi General Hospital for four years, he opened his private practice in 2019. The clinic provides a range of treatments to patients suffering from high blood pressure and a range of other conditions.
Company Name: Heart Specialist MacDonald
Contact Person: Dr. Michael MacDonald
Email: Send Email
Address:3 Mount Elizabeth, Medical Centre
City: Singapore 228510