Monday, March 20, 2023

Blood pressure medication has turned me into a sloth.

Around ten years ago or so, while at the doctor's for an annual physical it was discovered that my blood pressure was dangerously high. My doctor prescribed medication to lower my B/P. Mind you now, I was still working full time, doing strength training 3 days a week and walking 3 to 5 miles 6 days a week. I was 67 years old.

 Time, as you may have discovered, goes by quickly, even quicker as you accumulate years. So, my timeline here will be imprecise at best. Suffice it to say, this single medication was effective for a few years, but my B/P started climbing, again, to a level my doctor felt too high. He prescribed a 2nd medication to take in addition to continuing with the first drug. Over the course of time this scenario repeated itself 2 more times until a year ago when my medication to keep my pressure down totaled 4.

 I retired at age 75 and remained active, walking and playing pickleball 6 days a week. The last of the 4 medications was added 6 months ago (just before coming to Florida.). Since then, my blood pressure has been the lowest, consistently, then ever before that I can remember. I've become progressively more lethargic this year and for a while I put it off to age. I still have spurts of energy and can still play a pretty competitive pickleball session 3 days a week. But I've stopped my daily walks and find myself taking frequent naps during the day, (especially after a 2-hour pickleball session.) mimicking my cat. In spite of 2 to 3 1 hour+ naps during the day, I have no trouble sleeping through the night. I do get up at 0330 to 0400 everyday but that has been my routine for all of my adult life.

 This lethargy has been weighing heavily on my mind these last few months as I find myself being unable to assist my son and son in law with the extensive renovations of my Florida home following the extensive damage inflicted by hurricane Ian. This guilty feeling can no longer be excused by thinking; well Bub, you're getting on in age you know. And without saying it, I think my kids think the same thing.  I do help some but mostly with the cerebral stuff, permit applications primarily.  And I do clean the house and other household duties.  I'm not an invalid, just not my usual self when it comes to pulling my weight.

The thought to check out what effect, besides lowering blood pressure, these 4 medications have on people occurred to me recently and thusly I looked it up.  And, sure enough, each and every one of the types of medication I'm taking has as a side effect of causing fatigue.  So maybe I'm not getting old.  Well, yes you are my friend, but that is not the problem.

The dilemma to deal with now is, stop the medication and risk heart attack and/or stroke, or live out my final years as a sloth.


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