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How Do I Know I Have High Blood Pressure

Treatments For Sudden Rise In Blood Pressure

HOW DO I KNOW IF I HAVE HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE

A rise in already high blood pressure requires immediate medical attention. You can expect to have intravenous therapy and tests to determine what caused the spike in your pressure. Once your pressure is stabilized to a satisfactory level, then your doctor will discuss further treatment. Depending on your current health condition and any issues aside from high blood pressure, your treatment will vary.For example, if there is fluid in your lungs, you will be treated with prescribed diuretics to remove the fluid. If there is damage to your heart, you will be prescribed specific heart medication. Medications you may be taking may need to be adjusted or changed to another type, depending on your test results. Any kidney damage or tumors may require surgery.

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How Can I Be More Active

  • Check first with your healthcare provider before increasing your physical activity. Ask your provider what type and amount of exercise is right for you.
  • Choose aerobic activities such as walking, biking or swimming.
  • Start slowly and increase activity gradually. Aim for a regular routine of activity five times a week for 30 to 45 minutes each session.

What Are The Types Of High Blood Pressure

If you have high blood pressure with no known single cause, this is called essential hypertension or primary hypertension. Most people have this type of hypertension. If you have high blood pressure which is caused by another health problem, this is known as secondary hypertension, and treating the cause should bring your blood pressure back down to normal.

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Can High Blood Pressure Be Prevented Or Avoided

If your high blood pressure is caused by lifestyle factors, you can take steps to reduce your risk:

  • Lose weight.
  • Reduce your alcohol consumption.
  • Learn relaxation methods.

If your high blood pressure is caused by disease or the medicine you take, talk to your doctor. He or she may be able to prescribe a different medicine. Additionally, treating any underlying disease can help reduce your high blood pressure.

What Constitutes High Blood Pressure

Get to Know Your Blood Pressure

High blood pressure, also called hypertension, happens when the heart pumps blood against the artery walls at higher pressures than normal. It doesnt cause any symptoms, so the only way to know whether its high is to check it. But it isnt diagnosed from just one reading. You need at least two or more readings on two or more separate days before you can know whether you have high blood pressure. This is because your blood pressure changes from day to day and throughout each day, depending on what youre doing. It can increase temporarily from:

  • Caffeine

  • Stress or anxiety

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You Shouldnt Exercise If You Have High Blood Pressure

Regular moderate exercise not only helps bring down your blood pressure it strengthens your heart, zaps stress, and helps you stay at a healthy weight. If you have high blood pressure, ask your doctor what kind of exercise to do and how much.

A brisk half-hour walk 5 days a week is a good routine, but starting with even 10 minutes a day helps. How brisk? If you can walk and sing at the same time, you need to work a little harder. If you can walk and talk, you’re moving at a good pace.

What Medications Are Used To Treat High Blood Pressure

Four classes of high blood pressure medications are considered first line when starting treatment. Sometimes other medications are coupled with these first-line drugs to better control your high blood pressure. First-line, pressure-lowering medications are:

  • Angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors block the production of the angiotensin II hormone, which the body naturally uses to control blood pressure. When angiotensin II is blocked, your blood vessels dont narrow. Examples: lisinopril , enalapril or captopril.
  • Angiotensin II receptor blockers block this same hormone from binding with receptors in the blood vessels. ARBs work the same way as ACE inhibitors to keep blood vessels from narrowing. Examples: metoprolol , valsartan or losartan.
  • Calcium channel blockers prevent calcium from entering the muscle cells of your heart and blood vessels, allowing these vessels to relax. Examples: amlodipine , nifedipine , diltiazem .
  • Diuretics flush excess sodium from your body, reducing the amount of fluid in your blood. Diuretics are often used with other high blood pressure medicines, sometimes in one combined pill. Examples: indapamide, hydrochlorothiazide or chlorothiazide.

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What Are The Treatments For High Blood Pressure

Treatments for high blood pressure include heart-healthy lifestyle changes and medicines.

You will work with your provider to come up with a treatment plan. It may include only the lifestyle changes. These changes, such as heart-healthy eating and exercise, can be very effective. But sometimes the changes do not control or lower your high blood pressure. Then you may need to take medicine. There are different types of blood pressure medicines. Some people need to take more than one type.

If your high blood pressure is caused by another medical condition or medicine, treating that condition or stopping the medicine may lower your blood pressure.

NIH: National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute

Treatment Of High Blood Pressure

What to Do If You Have High Blood Pressure

Treatment for HBP depends on its severity and associated risks of developing other diseases. Treatment options include:

Lifestyle changes

Medications

  • ACE inhibitors will help blood vessels relax and open up, leading to a lower blood pressure.
  • Angiotensin II receptor blockers will help blood vessels open up, leading to a lower blood pressure.
  • Beta blockers will help reduce your blood pressure.
  • Alpha blockers will help reduce the arteries resistance, relaxing the muscle tone of the vascular walls.
  • Alpha-2 receptor agonists will help reduce blood pressure by decreasing the activity of the sympathetic portion of the involuntary nervous system.
  • Calcium channel blockers will help relax and open up narrowed blood vessels, reduce heart rate and lower blood pressure.
  • Combined alpha and beta blockers are used as an IV drip for those patients experiencing a hypertensive crisis.
  • Central agonists will help decrease the blood vessels ability to tense up or contract.
  • Diuretics water pills will help reduce the amount of fluid retention in your body.
  • Peripheral adrenergic inhibitors will help reduce blood pressure by blocking neurotransmitters in the brain.
  • Vasodilators will help the muscle in the walls of the blood vessels to relax, allowing the vessel to dilate.

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What Causes High Blood Pressure

High blood pressure usually develops over time. It can happen because of unhealthy lifestyle choices, such as not getting enough regular physical activity. Certain health conditions, such as diabetes and having obesity, can also increase the risk for developing high blood pressure. High blood pressure can also happen during pregnancy.

You can manage your blood pressure to lower your risk for serious health problems that may affect your heart, brain, kidneys, and eyes.

How Can I Monitor My Blood Pressure At Home

Monitoring your blood pressure at home is a great way to stay on top of your blood pressure readings. This way, you can get treatment or make adjustments in your treatment early, and this can prevent complications from high blood pressure over time.

You can buy an automated home blood pressure cuff online, without a prescription, or at local stores and pharmacies. Some insurance companies may also pay for a home cuff as long as you have a prescription or order from your healthcare provider.

Some people always have high blood pressure in a providers office, but normal blood pressure at home. This is called white coat hypertension. Monitoring your blood pressure at home can help sort this out.

Home blood pressure monitoring is also recommended as part of your diagnosis and treatment of high blood pressure, according to current guidelines. Its a great way to get more information about how your blood pressure changes over time. Sharing your home readings with your healthcare provider can help inform a treatment plan.

When you take your blood pressure, there are a few key points to keep in mind to get an accurate reading:

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Causes Of Sudden High Blood Pressure

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one of out every three American adults suffers from diagnosed high blood pressure with only one half keeping their pressure under control. Sudden high blood pressure usually occurs to a small percentage of people with high blood pressure. This can include young adults, including a high number of African-American men, and those experiencing:

  • Collagen vascular disorders
  • Pregnancy-induced high blood pressure

Sudden high blood pressure can also be brought on by daily activities and practices.

  • Medication use such as over-the-counter pain relievers, a combination of various medications, and abuse of cocaine and marijuana can spike blood pressure levels.
  • Smoking can cause a sudden increase in blood pressure as the chemicals, including nicotine, damage the linings of our blood vessels.
  • Diet habits are critical to maintaining normal blood pressure levels as the bad fat and sodium found in many foods increase the blood solute content. It also can build up and block the blood vessels, leading to major heart trouble such as a stroke.
  • Stress is part of our everyday life and becoming anxious about your worries can increase risk for spikes in blood pressure twofold.
  • Medical conditions like kidney disease, spinal injuries, adrenal gland tumors, thyroid issues, and scleroderma can raise blood pressure rapidly.

What Numbers Are Considered High Blood Pressure Stage 2

Hypertension High Bloodpressure

High blood pressure stage 2 numbers are a systolic number 140 mm Hg or higher or a diastolic number 90 mm Hg or higher.

Its important to take notice of the word or between the systolic and diastolic numbers. This means only one number has to be higher, not both numbers, for the reading to be in the stage 2 range 1.

Therefore, if your blood pressure is 140/79 or 119/90, either reading indicates youre in stage 2.

If the readings are consistently in this range, doctors are likely to prescribe a combination of medications and lifestyle changes. Prescribing both medications and lifestyle changes mean the BP is serious and more drastic action is necessary.

Its important to follow the doctors advice because the last thing you want is for your blood pressure to stay high or get even worse. The next BP category above this is hypertensive crisis which can result in calling 911. I wrote a blog post about it right here, Hypertensive Crisis.

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Blood Pressure Checks During Pregnancy

If you are pregnant, you should have your blood pressure checked on a regular basis, even if it is not high.

Watching your blood pressure while you are pregnant reduces your risk of developing pregnancy-induced hypertension. This can lead to a serious condition called pre-eclampsia where there is a problem with the placenta .

Monitor Your Blood Pressure Regularly

The best way to prevent complications and avoid problems is to recognize hypertension early.

Keep a log of your blood pressure readings and take it to your regular doctor appointments. This can help your doctor see any possible problems before the condition advances.

People with hypertension can deliver healthy babies despite having the condition. But it can be dangerous to both the birthing parent and baby if its not monitored closely and managed during the pregnancy.

People with high blood pressure who become pregnant are more likely to develop complications . For example, pregnant women with hypertension may experience decreased kidney function. Babies born to birthing parents with hypertension may have a low birth weight or be born prematurely.

Some people may develop hypertension during their pregnancies. Several types of high blood pressure problems can develop. The condition often reverses itself once the baby is born. Developing hypertension during pregnancy may increase your risk for developing hypertension later in life.

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Hypertension: What You Need To Know As You Age

You cant see high blood pressure, also called hypertension. And most ofthe time, you cant feel it. But if youre among the 78 million Americanswith hypertension or are one of the 70 million with prehypertension, its important to understandits effects on your healthand to take action today to bring your numbersdown to healthier levels.

Blood pressure is the force of blood against the inner walls of yourarteries. It has normal fluctuations throughout the dayfalling when yourerelaxed or asleep, rising naturally in the morning, and increasingtemporarily when youre under stress, excited or exercising. But when yourresting blood pressure level rises too high, it can scar, stiffen and/orweaken blood vessels. This effect can double your risk for aheart attack quadruple your odds for astroke raise your risk forheart failure, vision loss, kidney problems,dementiaand circulation problems such asperipheral artery disease weaken your bones and contribute toerectile dysfunctionin men.

Common Symptoms And Signs Of High Blood Pressure

“I have high blood pressure, what can I do?”

High blood pressure is the measure of pressure against arteries. Might you have high blood pressure? Do you know what signs to look for? Youll find information about the common signs of it in this article.

People usually tend to ignore high blood pressure. Even those who do go on medication only stay on the medication for a short while. According to studies, 90% dont stick with the recommended regime. Unless the blood pressure is kept under control it could lead to serious problems with vital organ such as your heart, kidneys, brain and eyes.

The normal numbers for blood pressure is 120/80. Between 120 and 140 is a pre-hypertensive stage that can be controlled by natural remedies such as exercise, watching your salt intake, no smoking or stopping if you do, lower cholesterol, eating vegetables, etc. if you do If it goes over 140/90 then you would be considered a hypertensive patient.

How would you find out if you have high blood pressure?

Listed below are the 10 common symptoms of high blood pressure.

  • Headache
  • Low libido or lack of sexual desire
  • Blurred vision

If you have not experienced the above symptoms, it does not mean you dont have it as the most common side effect is that it has no symptom. The best way to stay healthy is to have your blood pressure checked regularly.

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What Are The Symptoms Of Hypertension

Hypertension is generally a silent condition. Many people wont experience any symptoms. It may take years or even decades for the condition to reach levels severe enough that symptoms become obvious. Even then, these symptoms may be attributed to other issues.

of severe hypertension can include:

  • flushing

According to the American Heart Association , contrary to popular thought, severe hypertension doesnt typically cause nosebleeds or headaches except when someone is in hypertensive crisis.

The best way to know if you have hypertension is to get regular blood pressure readings. Most doctors offices take a blood pressure reading at every appointment.

If you only have a yearly physical, talk with your doctor about your risks for hypertension and other readings you may need to help you watch your blood pressure.

For example, if you have a family history of heart disease or have risk factors for developing the condition, your doctor may recommend that you have your blood pressure checked twice a year. This helps you and your doctor stay on top of any possible issues before they become problematic.

There are two types of hypertension. Each type has a different cause.

How Can I Treat High Blood Pressure

High blood pressure is very treatable. Treatment includes medications and changes you can make in your everyday life. Changes you can make to lower your blood pressure include:

  • Eating less salt

In some cases, making these changes may be enough to lower your blood pressure. If your blood pressure remains high, you may need to start taking medication to bring it down.

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When To See A Doctor About High Or Low Blood Pressure

Your body may go into shock if it does not receive enough oxygen and nutrients because of low blood pressure. You should call 911 immediately if you experience any signs of shock. This can include:

Low blood pressure can leave older adults vulnerable to suffering a fall that causes an injury. If your blood pressure remains too low without treatment, you could also end up with permanent damage to various organs.

Since high blood pressure typically doesnt have any symptoms, its important to be aware of your potential risk from factors like age, heredity, and lifestyle and to have your pressure checked regularly.

Other Inconclusively Related Symptoms

Why is there more and more high blood pressure? How do I know if I have ...

A variety of symptoms may be indirectly related to, but are not always caused by, high blood pressure, such as:

  • Blood spots in the eyes: Blood spots in the eyes are more common in people with diabetes or high blood pressure, but neither condition causes the blood spots. Floaters in the eyes are also not related to high blood pressure. However, an eye doctor may be able to detect damage to the optic nerve caused by untreated high blood pressure.
  • Facial flushing: Facial flushing occurs when blood vessels in the face dilate. It can occur unpredictably or in response to certain triggers such as sun exposure, cold weather, spicy foods, wind, hot drinks and skin-care products. Facial flushing can also occur with emotional stress, exposure to heat or hot water, alcohol consumption and exercise all of which can raise blood pressure temporarily. While facial flushing may occur while your blood pressure is higher than usual, high blood pressure is not the cause of facial flushing.
  • Dizziness: While dizziness can be a side effect of some blood pressure medications, it is not caused by high blood pressure. However, dizziness should not be ignored, especially if the onset is sudden. Sudden dizziness, loss of balance or coordination and trouble walking are all warning signs of a stroke. High blood pressure is a leading risk factor for stroke.

Written by American Heart Association editorial staff and reviewed by science and medicine advisers. See our editorial policies and staff.

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