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High Blood Pressure Specialist

Thirlby Clinic, PLC

Internal Medicine & Family Medicine located in Traverse City, MI

Almost 35% of Michigan adults have high blood pressure, and it can be fatal if you don’t take control quickly. The Thirlby Clinic, PLC, team offers expert high blood pressure and wellness management. To get compassionate help with your blood pressure, call the Traverse City, Michigan, office or schedule an appointment online today.

High Blood Pressure Q & A

What is high blood pressure?

High blood pressure, or hypertension, occurs when your blood pumps against your blood vessel walls at a too-high rate. Consistent high blood pressure has serious health consequences, potentially including heart disease, heart attack, and stroke. 

A healthy blood pressure level is below 120/80. If you consistently have higher numbers, the Thirlby Clinic, PLC, team can help you normalize your blood pressure and get healthy. 

What are the risk factors for high blood pressure?

The risk factors for high blood pressure include: 

  • Being overweight or obese
  • Lack of physical activity
  • Smoking 
  • High-salt diet
  • Inadequate dietary potassium
  • Too much alcohol; more than one daily drink for women, or two for men

Diabetes is also a significant risk factor, with around 60% of people with diabetes having high blood pressure. People with asthma are also more likely to have high blood pressure. There’s a link between high cholesterol and high blood pressure, as well. 

Increasing age and genetics can also contribute to high blood pressure, but overall, the risk factors are controllable. 

What are the signs of high blood pressure?

Unfortunately, high blood pressure rarely gives you any warning signs. You could have very high blood pressure and not know it until experiencing a medical emergency like a heart attack. 

For this reason, having wellness exams at Thirlby Clinic, PLC, at least once a year is very important. Your wellness exams include blood pressure monitoring and preventive care recommendations. 

If you have very high blood pressure, you might have headaches, breathing difficulties, and nosebleeds. But, those symptoms don't commonly appear until you're in a medical crisis.

How can I lower my blood pressure?

The Thirlby Clinic, PLC, team recommends effective strategies to normalize your blood pressure. These start with a lifestyle evaluation, including a discussion about your diet, recreational activities, and exercise. 

A few of the changes that can positively impact your blood pressure include losing extra weight, reducing sodium intake, discontinuing smoking, and reducing your alcohol intake. 

If these changes don't move your blood pressure into a normal range, the team may prescribe medications that reduce blood pressure. Even if you take hypertension drugs, you still need to make healthy lifestyle choices to maximize your health and reduce your risk of serious problems like heart disease. 

Call Thirlby Clinic, PLC, or schedule an appointment online to book your high blood pressure assessment.