Anxiety and high blood pressure

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Last week I measured my blood pressure and it was 138/81. Im physically active, don't consume any alcohol and overall my diet is healthy (no processed food, don't use any salt) the one thing I'm struggling to quite smoking but I'm on my way. The question here would be should I take any meds to lower my blood pressure as I have taken Norvasc in past when I experienced panick attack and my blood pressure rised to 180/90. But it went down to normal and typically was around 120 - 130. Since now. How do you think meds or check my blood pressure more often, as I understand it's not hypertension yet

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7 Replies

  • Posted

    Janis, 138/81 is a perfectly acceptable blood pressure. It's the diastolic (lower) figure that more important, as the systolic is likely to rise dramatically if you're at all anxious, as I suspect you were when you took it.

    Good for you on the healthy eating and cutting down on salt, and keep up the good work with the smoking. You also need to do regular moderate exercise. No need to go to the gym - four or five hours of cycling or brisk walking spread over the week is enough.

    I'd say don't check your BP more than once a week. Make sure you haven't eaten or drunk in the 30 mins before taking it - and certainly nothing containing caffeine. Also don't take it immediately after a period of vigorous exercise, or if you have a full bladder. All these things can send the systolic pressure higher. Sit calmly for a couple of minutes, then take your BP three times at 5-minute intervals and take an average of the readings. And remember there's no one perfect blood pressure. Everyone's BP varies all the time - it's the overall trend that counts.

    • Posted

      Great Advice, Lily!  Always good to see you on here!  Take care!   Ernie
  • Posted

    i think i was around 120/80 about 8-10 years ago...i was in a walking club then

    no alcohol for me though...fizzy water does at a party

    the novelty of being able to monitor one of my vital signs...two ...pulse as well...which is 60-64..appealed to me...i will still take the meds...i think the initial panic thing must have been caused by them

    i take mild antidepressants and guess what the side effects for most meds are

    depression, anxiety and headaches

    its a hard life?

    worth keeping a hold on though and i hate thinking i am ill...the prostate cancer thing was a bind but it went with radiation, hormone therapy, patience and time..

    6 years...

    the pain killers i got were top class but now i have been cut back by the NHS you get older here there is no real reason to keep you going too  long i suspect

    God help me if i have to go into hospital...!!!


  • Posted

    Dear Janis,

    IMHO, DON'T jump on that BP Med Bandwagon yet!  138/81 is almost meaningless as the Bottom Number is your Diastolic and it's Perfect! (81 - 80 Who cares about 1 Point up or down!)  The top number is your Systolic - and is primarily controlled by Stress, Anxiety, Normal Activity, etc. i.e., It constantly changes!  

    ?Did you have a Baby crying just before you took your pressure?  That'll do it!   Did you receive a Bill unexpectedly that you aren't really able to pay this week?  That'll do it!   I had to meet with 4 Sub-Contractors Yesterday trying to coordinate a Feb. 01 Deadline for a new Tenant.  And they can't be there at the same time.  I had to sequence them.  Bet mine was 138 - or more!  It's oftentimes related to what we call the "Fight or Flight" Syndrome!  You did say you're physically active but you do smoke.  You didn't state your Weight!  10 Pounds Over Normal can elevate your Pressure 10+ Points.  Did you know that?  Your biggest Issue - whether you realize it or not - is the Smoking.  Smoking makes the Blood "Sticky" causing it to adhere to your Veins, Vessels, etc.  Get off the Cigs!  And BTW, if you do suffer Panic Attacks occasionally or Regularly, your BP will DEFINITELY Rise during an attack.  Even without knowing your Age and Weight, You're going to be Fine!  The Top Number can be brought down via small weight loss; Calming yourself with Deep Breathing several times a day; understanding that some Stress is unavoidable such as taking care of Children - on and on - and get as much Rest as you can.  Especially Quality Sleep.  Let us hear from you in the next couple of weeks.  I'll bet you've "got this in the Bag"!  Good Luck.  You're Fine!   Ernie

    • Posted

      Thank you for this. I'm 5.10 wheying 178lbs. I guess I gained some 10pounds in last 6months. My main concern here is that I might develop CKD if my blood pressure is higher than normal.

  • Posted

    Dear Janis,

    ?At 178, you're only 4 Pounds into "Overweight" based on the BMI AND BMI is just one Tool to consider.  For example if you're physically active and have reasonable amount of Muscle vs. Fat, one can Totally ignore 4 Pounds - or even more.  BMI Tables are just Guidelines. The difference of 138 vs the varying "Standard" of 120/80 has changed Twice in the past 12 months in the States!  They adjusted it upward to 140/90 for anyone over 40 last Year - only to revert to 120/80 Two Months ago.  Lily Posted some very insightful info.  To get an accurate meaningful measurement of what ones' consistent BP is, is by following her instructions.  And I never personally take all those steps.  I mostly concern myself with my diastolic - But realize if my Systolic gets outrageous, I need to calm down, reflect on what bothering me, and possibly hang up on the Person trying to help me with my Computer Problem with an accent I absolutely can't understand!  (Not being Mean or Racist - just Realistic!  I speak Southern!  Not even Good English!  LOL!)  And NO, You're not even close to being in danger of Chronic Kidney Disease because of your current BP!  You're "Good to Go"!  Ernie

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