Every time you go to the doctor, they’ll need your weight and blood pressure. Facing the doctor’s scale can make you feel uneasy. And as you feel the blood pressure armband tighten, you may wonder why your doctor needs these vital signs.
Perhaps if you understand the significance of getting your weight and blood pressure, it’ll put you a little more at ease the next time you see your doctor.
A piece of your wellness puzzle
Navigating your health can sometimes be tricky. You may not be feeling well but can’t seem to find the reason why. As you go to see your doctor, your weight and blood pressure can help explain your overall health.
For example, if you are feeling fine and doing okay, we would want your weight and blood pressure to coincide with all of that. When these are linked to other clinical findings it helps formulate a diagnosis and treatment plan.
Doctors, nurses and nurse practitioners interpret vital signs to assess their patients’ overall progression. Weight and blood pressure are extremely important, especially in relation to your heart and health.
Tracking your trends over time
By tracking your weight and blood pressure over time, your provider can see what is normal for you and what may be a red flag in your health. Over time, your weight and blood pressure provide valuable information.
These key indicators help to tell:
- If you’re responding well to treatment
- If you’re being compliant with your recommended diet and exercise
- If your health is improving or declining
- If you’re at risk for diseases, such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, kidney disease, obesity or stroke
This is especially important if you are at risk for cardiovascular disease or have been diagnosed with any chronic diseases. Two key risk factors for cardiovascular disease are high blood pressure and obesity. If your weight goes up, your blood pressure level may go up as well. The good news is, there are things you can do to lower your blood pressure.
This can be the same with your cholesterol levels, all of which put you at risk for being diagnosed with cardiovascular disease or worsening of a chronic illness.
Embarrassed about your weight?
If you’re hesitant to step on the scale, you are not the only one. Keep these things in mind:
- You’re not alone: Just remember, you’re not the only one being weighed in at a visit. It’s a normal part of healthcare every single day.
- Gaining weight or losing weight: Whether you’re putting on a few pounds or losing weight unexpectedly, there may be an underlying health reason involved.
- Get educated: If you’ve been fluctuating in weight and aren’t sure why, see your doctor. Gaining or losing 15 pounds in a short time could be putting stress on your body or signify a medical condition.
- Make realistic goals: If you’d like to get your weight on track, your doctor can help you find a plan that will work for you.
- It’s a journey: Losing weight doesn’t happen overnight. It’s a journey. Mapping out how many pounds you’d like to lose needs to be in a time frame that’s achievable.
Know when you need help
Most of all, your weight and blood pressure are taken in order to provide better care and help you live well for longer. Don’t be afraid to ask your doctor or nurse practitioner for help getting your weight and blood pressure where they need to be.