Truck drivers have to pass a DOT Physical to be able to drive. Learn about the DOT Physical and blood pressure, how to pass and stay healthy.
High blood pressure (or hypertension) is a common condition that carries serious risks. It is one of the leading factors in heart disease, the deadliest disease in America.
Moreover, high blood pressure often shows no symptom, earning the nickname “the silent killer.” Because of this and more, truck drivers need to pass their DOT Physical and show that their blood pressure levels are healthy.
DOT Physical and Blood Pressure
The Department of Transportation (DOT) requires truck drivers to pass a physical exam – which includes a blood pressure test. They require drivers to have a blood pressure under 140/90.
Some drivers who have blood pressure readings above the requirements may still be able to drive – with some conditions. For example, depending on how high the levels are, some drivers will receive a temporary certification of one year or less.
To maintain that certification after the trial period is over, truck drivers must have blood pressure readings below 140/90. The best way to make sure you meet the requirements is to start making changes now instead of using last minute tricks.
There are a couple of things you can do to lower your blood pressure levels in the short-term, but they may not be enough. Depending on how high or low your readings are, these solutions may be able to help you pass – but long-term solutions are best.
However, if you’re short on time, you can try switching all your drinks with water. Not only does water help lower sodium levels, but it helps you avoid caffeinated drinks that increase blood pressure.
Avoid smoking, drinking alcohol, and eating fatty foods like burgers or microwave meals. Instead, increase the amount of fruits and vegetables in your diet and follow the DASH Diet.
Lastly, make sure you get plenty of restful sleep and do what you can to reduce your stress levels. Practice meditation and deep breathing techniques to get your stress under control.
To avoid any problems at the time of your DOT Physical, it’s best to maintain healthy blood pressure levels throughout the year. In addition to helping you pass your exam and certification, practicing long-term solutions will keep you healthy overall.
Exercise regularly and maintain a healthy weight to lower blood pressure levels. According to the American Heart Association, adults should get at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week.
Furthermore, some short-term solutions can also be part of your long-term plans for healthy blood pressure. These include eating healthier, quitting tobacco products, limiting alcohol intake, and getting the restful sleep you need.
Lastly, adding circulation supplements like L-arginine Plus to your routine may help maintain healthy blood pressure levels. According to studies, both oral and intravenous (IV) l-arginine supplements are effective at lowering overall blood pressure.
Ultimately, practicing healthy habits will result in the most benefits and passing the DOT Physical with flying colors.