Travel is many things—a break, an opportunity, and, occasionally, a whole lot of stress. And when you’re trying to manage your high blood pressure on the go, it only adds to the stress. No matter your destination, or if you’re hitting the road for work or leisure, you can’t leave your heart health at home.
Proper precautions and the right tools are as essential as your travel toothbrush (just ask your travel companions). The good news is that with a little effort, you can successfully manage your blood pressure and enjoy your travel, too.
Here are a few must-haves and must-dos to to add to your travel packing and prep list:
Take a trip…to your doctor
If you struggle to manage your high blood pressure, this is a must. First and foremost, your doctor can determine if travel is safe for you.
Once you have the go-ahead, they can advise on how to avoid issues and provide management tips for your specific concerns. This is especially true if you’re traveling by air since symptoms of hypertension worsen at higher altitudes.
Also, don’t forget to make sure you have enough refills of your prescriptions to last for the duration of your trip!
Take a hike
We promise, we mean this in the literal sense. Not only is walking a great way to get acquainted with your destination, it’s also one of the best ways to keep your blood pressure in check.
Regular physical activity (about 30 minutes per day) has been shown repeatedly to help lower and maintain a healthy blood pressure. Just be sure to talk to your doctor about what’s healthy for you.
Even if you’re traveling for business and can’t get out into nature, you can take the stairs, walk around the block on a break, or park at the far end of the parking lot when you get back to the hotel.
Take some certainty
Away from home and your usual resources, it can be hard to know for certain how well you’re managing your blood pressure. A wrist monitor (like the Premium Wrist Blood Pressure Monitor) allows you to bring that confidence with you.
This advanced, multi-user monitor provides trusted accuracy in a lightweight, travel-friendly package. It is even equipped with a sensor that lights up blue when you are correctly positioned at heart level. This helps ensure accurate results, even for people who are used to taking their blood pressure with an upper arm monitor when they’re at home.
Take a deep breath
It’s not a secret that stress can raise your blood pressure (sometimes significantly), and travel comes with more than its fair share of stress.
When you’re feeling the strain of travel (or life) it can help to take a beat and breathe in deep. In fact, slowing your breathing to six breaths every 30 seconds has been shown to temporarily lower blood pressure.
While deep breathing can’t replace medication, it can help your other management tools do their jobs better.
With a little preparation and the right equipment, there’s no reason to stress over managing your blood pressure on the road. Just remember to consult a professional, pack the right tools, take a hike, breathe deeply, and, of course, enjoy your travels.