High Blood Pressure or Hypertension – A Silent Killer

High Blood Pressure or Hypertension Overview

Hypertension is the term used to describe High Blood Pressure. Blood pressure is a measurement of the force against the walls of your arteries as your heart pumps blood through your body. Blood Pressure readings are usually given as two numbers e.g. 120/80 mmHg. One or both of these numbers can be too high. The Top Number is called the Systolic Blood Pressure, and the Bottom Number is called the Diastolic Blood Pressure.

English: Main complications of persistent high...
English: Main complications of persistent high blood pressure. Sources are found in main article: Wikipedia:Hypertension#Complications. To discuss image, please see Template_talk:Häggström diagrams. To edit, please use the svg version, convert to png and update both versions online. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
  • Normal Blood Pressure is when your blood pressure is lower than 120/80 mmHg most of the time.
  • High blood pressure (hypertension) is when your blood pressure is 140/90 mmHg or above most of the time.
  • If your blood pressure numbers are 120/80 or higher, but below 140/90, it is called Pre-Hypertension.

Causes of Hypertension

Two forms of High Blood Pressure have been described: Essential (Or Primary) Hypertension and Secondary Hypertension. Essential Hypertension is a far more common condition and accounts for 95% of hypertension. The cause of Essential Hypertension is multi-factorial, that is, there are several factors whose combined effects produce Hypertension. In Secondary Hypertension, which accounts for 5% of Hypertension, the high blood pressure is secondary to (caused by) a specific abnormality in one of the organs or systems of the body. Certain associations have been recognized in people with Essential Hypertension.

  • Essential Hypertension develops only in groups or societies that have a fairly high intake of salt, exceeding 5.8 grams daily.
  • Genetic Factors are thought to play a prominent role in the development of Essential Hypertension.
  • lack of exercise
  • Stress or anxiety
  • Diabetes
  • Drinking too much alcohol
  • Obesity

Symptoms of Hypertension

diagram explaining the physiology of arterial ...
diagram explaining the physiology of arterial pressure (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Most of the time, there are no Symptoms of Hypertension, usually high blood pressure is found when they visit their health care provider or checking. People can develop heart disease and kidney problems without knowing they have high blood pressure. If you have a severe headache, nausea or vomiting, bad headache, confusion, changes in your vision, or nosebleeds you may have a severe and dangerous form of high blood pressure called Malignant Hypertension.

Symptoms of Hypertension

Lifestyle changes required to bring your blood pressure down to a normal range. Medicines are rarely used for pre-hypertension. You can do many things to help control your blood pressure, including:-

  • Eat a heart-healthy diet, including potassium and fiber.
  • Drink plenty of water.
  • Exercise regularly, 30 minutes of Aerobic Exercise a day is helpful.
  • Quit smoking.
  • Limit alcohol
  • Limit the amount of sodium (salt) you eat , aim for less than 1,500 mg per day.
  • Reduce stress, try to avoid things that cause you stress. You can also try meditation or yoga.
  • Maintain a healthy body weight

A single Blood Pressure Drug may not be enough to control your blood pressure, and you may need to take two or more drugs. It is very important that you take the Prescribed Medications Only. If you have side effects, your health care provider can substitute a different medication.

 

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