May 16

Balancing Your Blood Pressure

7.4 Million Canadians live with high blood pressure also known as hypertension and it is one of the leading health problems in our nation. It can have no symptoms clinically that is why it is also known as “ the silent killer”, but can lead to fatal results such as causing strokes, heart attacks, heart failure and kidney disease from the excessive pressure in the arterial walls.

To help control blood pressure it is important to adopt a healthy lifestyle primarily. These steps would include getting regular exercise, quitting smoking, limiting your alcohol intake, and eating a diet low in fat, salt and cholesterol. Finding ways to manage stress is also important.

Blood pressure is the force of blood against your blood vessels as it circulates. This force is necessary to make the blood flow, delivering nutrients and oxygen throughout your body. However, high blood pressure means there is too much pressure in your blood vessels. This can damage your blood vessels and cause health problems as mentioned before.

When measuring blood pressure it is calculated by two numbers, the systolic pressure which is the pressure that occurs when the heart contracts and will be the highest out of the two and the diastolic pressure which is when the heart is relaxed and between beats filling with blood. A classification of high blood would be a reading of 140/90mmHG.blood-pressure-heart

Massage Therapy can be used as a natural therapy to help in lowering blood pressure. After consulting with your doctor, you would begin the journey of altering your lifestyle habits. As the classification of high blood pressure can vary (mild, moderate, severe) and complicating cardiovascular conditions can be present and whether or not your blood pressure remains stable through medication, modification to each client’s treatment is necessary when receiving Massage Therapy.  Positioning, duration of treatment as well as technique applied are some of the factors.

With the approval of your physician, Massage Therapy could be a great benefit as it helps with circulation in a few different ways. It mechanically assists in emptying and facilitating a forward movement of blood and lymph through the vessels. As well blood vessels collapse and refill as massage techniques are applied and cause stimulation to the vasomotor nerve supply in the blood vessels which will help them contract and dilate pushing the blood through the vessels with more ease.

Furthermore, Massage Therapy has great benefits in decreasing stress levels and anxiety. With an onset of stress, your lifestyle habits and health concerns can quickly diminish in priority which can directly affect your body in negative ways. Although stress is not a leading cause of chronic high blood pressure it does elevate it at times and by clearing out the mental clutter and turning down your stress response it would be much easier to tune in good health habits.

Benefit your body and mind today and begin making Massage Therapy a regular part of your healthy lifestyle.

– Nina Cox, RMT

Do you want to encourage a loved one to become healthier? Consider a gift certificate. We offer gift certificates for both massage therapy and physiotherapy. They also make great birthday presents!

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