What Sweating Can Mean
According to the Mayo Clinic, the inability to sweat sufficiently is a medical condition known as anhidrosis .
People who can’t sweat normally, whether they can’t sweat over most of their body or only across certain parts of the body, can get overheated to the point of developing cramping, heat exhaustion or even heatstroke, which can be fatal. This condition is sometimes inherited, but in other cases, it may be the result of skin trauma, certain drugs or specific conditions.
On the other hand, Mayo Clinic experts point out that some people have an excessive sweating condition called hyperhidrosis. In that situation, the individual may sweat in the absence of extreme heat or vigorous physical activity, and the amount of sweat may be far more than normal, causing clothes to literally drip on contact.
Experts at the American Academy of Dermatology estimate that perhaps as much as 3 percent of Americans have hyperhidrosis, and it’s not always clear what causes it. However, the AAD says that most people with this condition either have a family member who also has it, they have an underlying medical condition such as gout or diabetes that increases the risk or they’re taking a medication or supplement that triggers the situation.
Youre Sweating All Over Your Body Instead Of In Just One Area Like The Armpits Or Face
All-over body sweating can occur in various forms of secondary hyperhidrosis, or sweating that is caused by or associated with another disorder or medication.
Still, most of the time, generalized sweating is a normal reaction to heat, stress, or exercise, Djavaherian said. If youre unsure whether your experience is normal, checking with your doctor is the best course of action.
Maintain A Healthy Weight
Being overweight is a risk factor for having high blood pressure, and your risk increases further if you are obese.
There are two ways to check if you are overweight:
- Body Mass Index – This is your weight in kilograms divided by your height in metres squared. In the UK, people with a BMI of between 25 to 30 are overweight, and those with an index above 30 are classed as obese. People with a BMI of 40 or more are morbidly obese.
- Waist size – Using a measuring tape place the tape round your waist between the bottom of your ribs and the top of your hip bone. The table below indicates how much your health might be at risk, your ethnicity should also be taken into account.
|Over 80 cm|
The best way to tackle obesity is by reducing the amount of calories that you eat, and taking regular exercise. Your GP can provide you with further information and advice on how you can do this.
More about having a healthy weight
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How To Lower Blood Pressure
There are lots of things you can do to lower your blood pressure.
If your doctor has given you blood pressure medication, take it as prescribed. However, you’ll also need to follow a heart-healthy lifestyle.
Even if you haven’t been diagnosed with hypertension, following these tips will be good for your blood pressure and good for your heart.
Stopping smoking is a great thing you can do for your blood pressure and your heart health.
Ask your doctor or nurse for help.
Phone Quitline 0800 778 778, or visit quit.org.nz for information and support.
Eat more heart-healthy foods and less salt
What you put into your body can make a big difference to your blood pressure.
Eat a wide variety of heart-healthy foods like:
- whole grains
Read more about the benefits of exercise.
Researchers are still trying to understand the exact link between stress and long-term high blood pressure. However being stressed contributes to other risk factors like poor diet and drinking more alcohol.
You can’t always remove the sources of stress in your life. But here are some things you can do to manage them.
- Enjoy exercise every day, like taking a walk.
- Take a break for yourself.
- Get 7-8 hours plus sleep each night.
- Talk about how you are feeling.
- Try relaxation music or breathing exercises.
A Woman’s Risk Of High Blood Pressure Increases After Menopause
Menopause, which begins once a woman goes 12 consecutive months without experiencing a period, usually around her 50s, is related to high blood pressure.
“During aging and menopause, there are several changes in the body related to hormone levels and body weight,” warns Dr. Patel. “These changes may increase a woman’s risk of high blood pressure.”
Menopause and its symptoms also might be another reason high blood pressure sometimes goes undiagnosed in women. Symptoms of the two, such as fatigue and headaches, can overlap.
“A woman may delay scheduling a checkup with her doctor about symptoms because they seem related to menopause,” Dr. Patel adds. “In this way, high blood pressure can go undiagnosed which is yet another reason why regularly monitoring your blood pressure is so important.”
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Things That Can Increase Your Risk Of Getting High Blood Pressure
You might be more at risk if you:
- are overweight
- eat too much salt and do not eat enough fruit and vegetables
- do not do enough exercise
- drink too much alcohol or coffee
- do not get much sleep or have disturbed sleep
- are over 65
- have a relative with high blood pressure
- are of black African or black Caribbean descent
- live in a deprived area
Making healthy lifestyle changes can sometimes help reduce your chances of getting high blood pressure and help lower your blood pressure if it’s already high.
Why Does Hypertension In Middle
Dr. Angela H.E.M. Maas, who was the lead author of the document, said that high blood pressure is taken more seriously in men and less well treated in women.
She said this is because we consider elevated blood pressure in women often as stress, and in men as hypertension.
This is partly because of bias by doctors, but also by women themselves, Maas said. Women often explain an elevated blood pressure as stress-related and are not always open to the hypertension diagnosis and treatment.
Maas said it can often take more time to convince women and to start and continue medical treatment.
The timing of onset of hypertension is often at the start of menopause and this leads to overlapping symptoms that are not always properly adjudicated, she said.
In the past, women were considered less likely than men to have heart disease, according to Dr. Maan Malahfji, a cardiologist with Houston Methodist DeBakey Cardiology Associates, who was not associated with the consensus report.
This may have resulted in doctors being less aggressive in investigating its symptoms and controlling them.
Now theres growing recognition that women are at just as much risk as men after going through menopause, and there may even be more complications.
Elevated blood pressure can be manifested in different ways between men and women, but is very often without any symptoms, so screening is vital, Malahfji said.
These are all symptoms that overlap with hypertension symptoms.
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Diagnosing High Blood Pressure
The only way to find out whether you have high blood pressure is to have your blood pressure checked regularly. Ask your GP when you are next due for yours to be checked.
Before having your blood pressure taken, you should rest for at least five minutes and empty your bladder. To get an accurate blood pressure reading, you should be sitting down and not talking when the reading is taken.
Having one high blood pressure reading does not necessarily mean that you have high blood pressure. Your blood pressure can change throughout the day. Feeling anxious or stressed when you visit your GP can raise your blood pressure .
Therefore, your GP will need to take several readings over a set period of time, usually every month, to see whether your blood pressure level is consistently high.
Blood and urine tests may also be carried out in order to check for conditions that are known to cause an increase in blood pressure, such as kidney infections.
You may also be given a blood pressure device to take home so that you can record your blood pressure level throughout the day. This also helps to identify white coat syndrome and therefore helps to identify the best treatment options for you.
High Blood Pressure: A Quick Overview
Everyones blood pressure is different, so it can be hard to find out if you have a higher blood pressure than normal. However, as a general guide, if your blood pressure is over 140/90mmHG, you have high blood pressure.
If your blood pressure gets too high, you could suffer from a range of health complications which include:
- Heart Attacks
- Heart Disease
If you believe you have high blood pressure, it is always good for a doctor to ensure you dont suffer from these health complications.
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Lowering Systolic Blood Pressure More May Cut Health Risks
One major study found that lowering systolic blood pressure to well below the commonly recommended level also greatly lowered the number of cardiovascular events and deaths among people at least 50 years old with high blood pressure.
When study participants achieved a systolic blood pressure target of 120 mmHg compared to the higher target of 140 mmHg recommended for most people, and 150 for people over 60 issues such as heart attack, stroke and heart failure were reduced by almost one-third, and the risk of death by almost one-fourth.
“That’s important information, because more lives may be saved and more deaths may be prevented if we maintain lower blood pressure in certain patients,” says Lynne Braun, NP, PhD, a nurse practitioner at the Rush Heart Center for Women.
Braun cautions, however, that your personal blood pressure target depends on a variety of things, including your current blood pressure, lifestyle, risk factors, other medications you are taking and your age. “Every person has to be evaluated as an individual,” she says. “Realistically, we can’t get everybody down to 120, and trying to do so may create unintended problems.”
It can be dangerous, for instance, to keep an older person on medications that have unsafe side effects, such as diuretics , which can cause dehydration and dizziness in older adults.
And there can be other issues involved with taking multiple medications, such as cost and compliance.
What Does High Blood Pressure Feel Like
High blood pressure or hypertension may signal that your heart is working harder than usual and if left untreated, it can take a serious toll on the health of your cardiovascular system. But does it cause signs and symptoms? And what does it feel like?
What does hypertension feel like?
There is usually no sign and symptom of high blood pressure. But if the level goes up significantly, there may be certain signs and symptoms to occur.
Hypertension is also called as a silent killer. Many times it doesnt cause any symptoms until your blood pressure level is extremely high. In fact, many people with hypertension dont realize when they have it.
The most effective way to keep monitoring the fluctuation is by taking regular checkups. Taking a test for hypertension is simple and practical.
You dont need a blood test like in checking the levels of your cholesterol and blood sugar. Even you can take the test on your own at home.
There are now available many home blood pressure monitor kits that you can use practically. And you dont need to get prescription from your doctor to purchase one.
Although there is no specific sign and symptom of hypertension, people may experience one or some of the following symptoms when their blood pressure is extremely high :
If you in-doubt to your symptoms, consult more with your GP /doctor for more advice and clearly diagnosis.
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If High Blood Pressure Drug Side Effects Bother You
Partner with your doctor. Ask if there are any steps you can take to lessen medication side effects. For example, to lessen the effects of low blood pressure, it may help to avoid standing for a long time in the sun. In some cases, side effects such as fatigue or diarrhea may subside with time. In other cases, your doctor may change the dosage or prescribe another high blood pressure medication. A combination of medications sometimes works better than one medication alone by not only improving high blood pressure control but also by reducing side effects.
Also, when you first start a new high blood pressure medicine, be aware of rare allergic reactions. Call 911 right away if you develop hives, wheezing, vomiting, light-headedness, or swelling in your throat or face.
More Than Just A Hot Flash
A University of Hawaii study investigated the possible connection between hot flashes and hypertension.
A sample of 202 women, ages 40 to 55 years, was monitored around the clock for both hot flashes and changes in ambulatory blood pressure .
The women also each kept a diary of their hot flashes and any accompanying changes in mood.
The results were interesting, and quite possibly useful to you if you are a woman in this age group.
Over a two-week period, there was no significant difference in mean blood pressure between women who reported having a hot flash any time during those two weeks, and those who did not.
However, women who experienced frequent hot flashes also had a systolic blood pressure that was significantly higher than average. Systolic refers to the top number of your blood pressure reading and measures the pressure in your arteries when your heart contracts.
In fact, this association was so strong that researchers could use the womens hot flashes to predictincreases in their systolic numbers.
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Does Hot Weather Raise Blood Pressure
With the weather getting warmer every day, many of us want to go outside, get a tan, and enjoy the sun. However, staying outside in the heat for too long can be risky, especially for those with certain health conditions. Take a look at this article as we answer important questions, such as does outside temperature affect body temperature? Does hot weather raise blood pressure? And when to see a doctor for high blood pressure.
Complications From High Blood Pressure In Men Vs Women
For women, high blood pressure during pregnancy can cause preeclampsia, a severe form of gestational hypertension. Symptoms of preeclampsia include:
- Abdominal pain
- Vision changes
Preeclampsia should be treated by a doctor immediately as it can cause serious damage to the baby and mother, harm key organs of the mother like the kidneys, or result in fetal complications including low birth weight or even stillbirth. The only cure for preeclampsia is delivering the baby before complications occur.
For men, hypertension can cause erectile dysfunction, so much so that a majority of men over 40 who have high blood pressure also have erectile dysfunction.
Blood flow into the penis is what allows for the penis to become erect, but high blood pressure means that the blood vessels cannot dilate properly to allow that blood flow.
In addition, high blood pressure can be correlated with low sexual desire in men and interfere with ejaculation. Medications that treat high blood pressure may cause erectile dysfunction as well.
While these problems usually go away after blood pressure is lowered, it is important to contact a doctor to discuss any potential complications.
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Causes Of High Blood Pressure
Although the exact cause is unknown, certain conditions, traits or habits may raise your risk for the condition. These are known as risk factors and include:
Non-modifiable risk factors: These factors are irreversible and cannot be changed. The more of these risk factors you have, the greater your chance of developing HBP.
- Starting at age 18, ask your doctor for a blood pressure reading at least every two years. If you’re age 40 or older, or you’re 18 to 39 with a high risk of high blood pressure, ask your doctor for a blood pressure reading every year.
- Family history/Genetics
- African Americans and non-white Hispanic Americans are at higher risk for developing high blood pressure than any other group in the U.S.
Modifiable risk factors: These factors can be modified, treated or controlled through medications or lifestyle changes.
- Excessive alcohol consumption over many years.
- Little to no physical activity
- Excessive amounts of salt in diet that excess the recommended amounts of 1,500 to 2,300 mg of sodium per day.
- Long history of smoking and/or drug abuse
- Extreme emotional stress
Other conditions that contribute to developing high blood pressure
Why You Should Pay Attention To Your Blood Pressure
Hypertension can wreak havoc on the body before alarming symptoms appear. Thats why regular checkups are a must.
Sometimes, Dr. Lioudis asks patients to check their blood pressure at different times of the day. Its the only way to spot masked hypertension. People with this condition have normal blood pressure in the doctors office, but high blood pressure at home.
We cant do anything for hypertension unless we know it exists, he says. Thats why we advise everyone to have their pressures checked at least yearly. They should also talk with their family doctor about stress, heart or kidney disease, family history of high blood pressure and any other potential contributing factor. By working together, you can bring your blood pressure under control.
This article originally appeared in Cleveland Clinic Heart Advisor.
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