Question – I have high blood pressure. Will my life insurance premiums be more expensive because of that?
One of the most common afflictions that people face is high blood pressure. In fact, there are 10s of millions of people who are diagnosed with high blood pressure. When applying for a life insurance policy, most companies will consider high blood pressure to be a risk factor. In many cases, even if you have been diagnosed with high blood pressure you will still be able to get a life insurance policy. However, the premiums could be a bit higher than the premiums for someone who does not have it. In some instances, an insurance company might decline your application for a life insurance policy if you have high blood pressure.
A lot will depend on the company that you are applying for the policy through. There are different companies out there and each of them tends to have a different view on how significant they feel about high blood pressure. If you have blood pressure that is high make sure that you shop around to find a company that will offer the best rate.
How High Blood Pressure Effects Premiums
A life insurance company will raise the premiums of a policy to account for the risks that are associated with high blood pressure, which can be an early indicator of cardiovascular diseases such as heart attacks and strokes.
The life insurance company will look at your overall health. This includes your lifestyle and habits as well as the relationship of your height and weight. They will also consider the amount of exercise that you do as well as your specific blood pressure levels.
Blood Pressure Ranges
The underwriters of a life insurance company will look over your most recent blood pressure readings along with your history with the issue. There are some blood pressure readings that will determine the status of your risk for a life insurance policy.
For a regular life insurance policy readings that do not exceed 150/90 when controlled by medications. For an older age group, the readings may be higher. For example, individuals who are over the age of 50 or 60 may get a regular policy if their readings are a bit above these levels.
To get a preferred policy you will need to keep your readings at 140/90 on a regular basis when using medication and at 150/90 when you do not use medication. This would provide you with premiums that are a bit lower than those in the regular classification.
For a preferred plus policy you will need to keep your blood pressure readings under 140/90 without using medication. This would mean that you do not have high blood pressure and would make you eligible for the lowest premium rates.
Improving your Insurance Rates when you have High Blood Pressure
There are some steps that you can take in order to improve your chances of getting a life insurance policy even if you have high blood pressure.
The first thing that you will need to do is to make sure you are treating your blood pressure. Since high blood pressure typically does not produce immediate medical problems, people tend to ignore it. This could cause a life insurance company to deny your policy. Make sure that you get regular checkups and take medication as required in order to control it.
You should give up your bad habits. There are certain habits that can aggravate high blood pressure. This includes excessive consumption of alcohol, smoking, and overeating. If you indulge in any of these, you should cut back as soon as possible and make it a goal to quit totally.
Start by losing any extra weight as being overweight can be a strain on the heart, which can increase blood pressure. Losing a few pounds may help lower your numbers.
Exercise is a good way to lower your blood pressure as well. A regular exercise routine can help lower your blood pressure. It can be as simple as walking a few miles each day. If you are completely sedentary your blood pressure can worsen.
Your diet can be a cause of your high blood pressure. There are certain foods such as caffeine, fats, salt, and others that can have a negative result on your blood pressure. You should avoid processed foods and add more vegetables and fruits to your diet.
Stress is another contributor to high blood pressure. You will want to make sure to try to relax as much as possible. Remove stressors from your life and engage in activities that will help you counter the effects of stress. Meditation can be extremely helpful in the relaxation process.
If you are applying for a life insurance policy, work with a company that has a positive view of blood pressure as being a risk factor.