High Blood Pressure Specialist

Houcks Road Family Practice

Paul Williams, DO

Family Practice & Aesthetics located in Harrisburg, PA

Many men and women who have dangerously high blood pressure (HBP) don’t know it, which is why regular screening is important for managing the condition. Each time you visit Houcks Road Family Practice in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, Dr. Paul Williams and his caring staff test your high blood pressure to keep you safe. Whether you know you have HBP or suspect you may, Dr. Williams can treat your condition so you stay healthy for life. Call the helpful staff or use the online booking form to schedule an appointment today.

High Blood Pressure Q & A

What is high blood pressure?

Also known as hypertension, high blood pressure refers to a state in which your blood exerts higher than normal pressure against your blood vessels as it circulates through your body. If you don’t treat HBP, the high forces in your vessels can cause dangerous and potentially lethal conditions, such as:

  • Heart attack and heart failure
  • Aneurysms and stroke
  • Kidney disease and failure
  • Cognitive changes
  • Impaired vision and eye damage
  • Peripheral artery disease (PAD)

How can I tell if I have high blood pressure?

High blood pressure has no distinct symptoms, which is why it’s called the “silent killer” and why regular screenings should be part of your self-care plan.

Dr. Williams and his caring medical professionals determine whether your blood pressure is healthy or not by measuring the pressure in your blood vessels when your heart is pumping (systolic pressure) and the pressure when your heart is at rest (diastolic pressure).

When your blood pressure is normal, your systolic rate is below 120 mmHg and your diastolic rate is below 80 mmHg. Abnormal blood pressure is categorized into three stages, and can be affected by a change in either diastolic or systolic pressure:

  • Prehypertension (systolic 120-139 or diastolic 80-89)
  • Stage 1 HBP (systolic 140-159 or diastolic 90-99)
  • Stage 2 HBP (systolic 160 or higher or diastolic 100 or higher)

If your blood pressure test indicates you are hypertensive or prehypertensive, Dr. Williams then administers an electrocardiogram (EKG) to check the health of your heart. An EKG tells him if you’ve had a heart attack or have abnormalities in your heart such as thickened muscles or impaired blood flow.

How do doctors treat HBP?

Dr. Williams approaches each case of high blood pressure individually. Depending on what stage of disease you’re in, he may recommend lifestyle changes only, or lifestyle changes with medications that lower your HBP and ease the pressure on your heart. Stage 1 and stage 2 hypertension usually require ongoing medical care so that you stay healthy and safe.

Some lifestyle changes that can lower HBP include:

  • Losing weight
  • Eating more vegetables and fruits
  • Avoiding salt and sodium
  • Getting more exercise
  • Quitting smoking
  • Learning meditation and other calming techniques

Don’t risk the consequences of untreated high blood pressure. Get a simple blood pressure test at Houcks Road Family Practice by calling the friendly team or booking your appointment online.