High Blood Pressure Facts
What every adult should know about high blood pressure, or hypertension
There’s a good reason why every doctor’s appointment starts with a blood pressure check. While one in three American adults has high blood pressure, about 20% of people are unaware that they have it because it is largely symptomless.
In fact, most people find out they have high blood pressure during a routine office visit.
Blood pressure is the force of blood pushing against the walls of arteries as the heart pumps blood. High blood pressure, also referred to as hypertension, is when that force is too high and begins harming the body. If left untreated, it willl eventually cause damage to the heart and blood vessels.
Your blood pressure is measured in two numbers: The top systolic blood pressure measures the force pushing against artery walls when the heart is contracting. The bottom diastolic blood pressure measures pressure in the arteries when the heart is resting between beats.
Normal blood pressure levels are 120 mmHg/80 mmHg or lower. At risk levels are 120-139 mmHg/80-89 mmHg. Readings of 140 mmHg/90 mmHg or higher are defined as high blood pressure.
Here are six other things you should know about high blood pressure.
Reduce Stress Through Meditation And Rest
Chronic stress can lead to chronic elevations in the stress hormones cortisol and adrenaline, says Dr. Desai. These hormones constrict the arteries and cause weight gain, which further increases blood pressure.
He recommends reducing stress by using breathing exercises, practicing meditation, completing physical exercise, practicing yoga, logging quality sleep, taking breaks throughout the day, spending time in nature, listening to music and eating a balanced diet.
What Are The Possible Side Effects
Medicines affect everyone differently. Not everyone will have the same side effects from a certain medicine.
Antihypertensive medicines might make you feel dizzy when you stand up. They also might lower the levels of potassium in your blood. You may have trouble sleeping or feel tired during the day. You might have a cough, dry mouth, and headaches. You may feel bloated, constipated, or depressed. Some antihypertensive medicines can cause men to have erection problems.
Talk with your doctor about any side effects you notice. If one medicine does not work for you or if it causes side effects, you can try another medicine. Let your doctor help you find the right medicine for you.
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Treating High Blood Pressure
Treatment for high blood pressure will depend on your blood pressure levels and your associated risk of developing a cardiovascular disease, such as a heart attack or stroke.
There are seven main risk factors for developing a cardiovascular disease. These are:
- having a high level of cholesterol in your blood
- having a family history of cardiovascular disease .
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.
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High Blood Pressure Treatment
The best way to lower blood pressure begins with changes you can make to your lifestyle to help lower your blood pressure and reduce your risk of heart disease. Additionally, your doctor may prescribe medicine to lower your blood pressure. These are called antihypertensive medicines.
The goal of treatment is to reduce your blood pressure to normal levels. Your doctor may prescribe medicine thats easy to take and has few, if any, side effects. This treatment is highly successful. If your blood pressure can only be controlled with medicine, youll need to take the medicine for the rest of your life. It is common to need more than one medicine to help control your blood pressure. Dont stop taking the medicine without talking with your doctor. Otherwise, you may increase your risk of having a stroke or heart attack.
Get Plenty Exercise Anyway Even If Its Quite Gentle
Even if you arent sitting a lot, then getting plenty exercise is good for your blood pressure. Its long been known that aerobic or cardio exercise is excellent for lowering high blood pressure. This refers to any activity that gets your heart and lungs working harder, such as jogging, dancing, even digging the garden, as this strengthens your heart and improves the efficiency of your circulatory system.
Strength or resistance training can also be helpful. You can read more in our article here about how to lower blood pressure through exercise.
However, almost anything that gets you moving is good. Just being active, even in a low-level way will improve your health and blood pressure. Some studies suggest that if if youre generally fairly active, then the negative effects of sitting arent quite so bad.
So do what you can. Set your body in motion at every opportunity. Even if its difficult at first, youll become more limber and mobile the more you do it. Enjoy the feeling of becoming stronger and fitter. Enjoy having a body!
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Herbs For Low Blood Pressure
Many herbal supplements and commercial beverages can cause vasoconstriction that elevates blood pressure substantially, which is why people who take medicine for high blood pressure must use caution when taking over-the-counter decongestants and supplements. Even if you are otherwise healthy, you should stop taking any supplement that produces symptoms of , such as a .
To treat symptoms of hypotension with herbs and other substances, try:
Making The Exercise Habit Stick
Despite our best intentions, many of us struggle ditching our sedentary lifestyle. But there are steps you can take to make exercise less intimidating and more fun.
Start small and build momentum. If exercising for 30 minutes a day, 5 times a week sounds overwhelming, set a smaller goal and gradually build up as you gain self-confidence and momentum.
Reward yourself. Once it becomes a regular habit, exercise will reward you with more energy, better sleep, a greater sense of well-being, and improved cardiovascular health. When youre starting out, though, give yourself a simple reward for successfully completing a workout, such as having a hot bath or a favorite cup of coffee.
Choose activities you enjoy. Youre more likely to stick with a workout you find pleasurable. If you hate running but like yoga or dancing, for example, dont force yourself onto the treadmill every day. Pick activities that fit your lifestyle, abilities, and taste.
See How to Start Exercising and Stick to It to learn more.
The effects on your blood pressure
- 30 minutes of moderate aerobic exercise, such as walking, for five days of the week can reduce your reading by 4 to 11 mm Hg.
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What Hypertension Does To Your Kidneys
You can see this chicken-or-egg effect with high blood pressure and kidney disease as well. Hypertension puts extra pressure on the kidneys filtering units, which can lead to scarring. This impairs the kidneys ability to regulate fluid, which increases blood pressure.
If this cycle is not stopped, it can lead to kidney disease and kidney failure, says hypertension specialist George Thomas, MD, who is Director of the Center for Blood Pressure Disorders in the Department of Nephrology and Hypertension.
High blood pressure and uncontrolled diabetes are the most common causes of kidney disease.
Unfortunately, the vast majority of people with kidney disease dont realize they have it. The signs and symptoms may be attributed to other conditions and usually appear when the kidneys have already begun to fail. Here are symptoms to watch for:
- Unusual fatigue.
- Blood or foam in the urine.
- Swelling in the ankles, feet or around the eyes.
- Lack of appetite, nausea or vomiting.
- Muscle cramps.
- Taste abnormality.
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms particularly if you are at risk of kidney disease because youre over age 60, have high blood pressure, have diabetes or have a family history of kidney failure talk to your doctor about your kidney health and salt intake.
What Four Things Happen Right Before A Heart Attack
Here are 4 signs of heart attack to be on the lookout for:
- #1: Chest Pain, Pressure, Squeezing, and Fullness.
- #2: Arm, Back, Neck, Jaw, or Stomach Pain or Discomfort.
- #3: Shortness of Breath, Nausea, and Lightheadedness.
- #4: Breaking Out in a Cold Sweat.
- Heart Attack Symptoms: Women vs Men.
- What Next?
- Next Steps.
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What Causes High Blood Pressure
According to Dr. Singh, hypertension is broken down into two types: primary and secondary. Primary hypertension, also called essential hypertension, has no identifiable cause and is the most common form of high blood pressure. Disposition towards primary hypertension is mostly attributed to:
- General aging
- Poor diet
Genetic factors, as well as lifestyle choices to diet and exercise, may contribute to the development of primary hypertension, Dr. Singh says.
Secondary hypertension, on the other hand, occurs when the elevation in pressure has a readily identifiable underlying condition,” explains Dr. Singh. Those causes can include:
- Poor diet
- An underlying condition such as:
- Kidney disease
Limit Your Alcohol Intake
Regularly drinking too much alcohol can raise your blood pressure over time.
Staying within the recommended levels is the best way to reduce your risk of developing high blood pressure:
- men and women are advised not to regularly drink more than 14 units a week
- spread your drinking over 3 days or more if you drink as much as 14 units a week
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How Is Blood Pressure Measured
Blood pressure is defined as the amount of pressure that is exerted on the artery walls as blood moves through them. It is measured in millimetres of mercury, or mmHg.
A more detailed explanation is provided below.
Two measurements are used to measure blood pressure:
- Systolic pressure – the measure of blood pressure exerted when your heart beats and forces blood around your body.
- Diastolic pressure – the measure of blood pressure when your heart is resting in between beats.
Both the systolic and diastolic pressures are measured in millimetres of mercury .
The figures are usually represented with the systolic pressure first, followed by the diastolic pressure. Therefore, if your GP says that your blood pressure is ‘120 over 80’, or 120/80mmHg, they mean that you have a systolic pressure of 120mmHg and a diastolic pressure of 80mmHg.
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.
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How Can I Raise My Blood Pressure Instantly
Everyone went to know, how can I raise my blood pressure instantly? Here is the total solution to raise your blood pressure instantly. Low blood pressure is indeed less harmful to health, like hypertension , but is mostly stiff felt by those affected as much. In addition to a lack of concentration, dizziness, and malaise, constant tiredness puts a significant strain on those affected in everyday life.
However, in addition to a healthy lifestyle, some foods can remedy the situation quickly and are easy to integrate into the daily routine well show you which foods raise blood pressure and what tips will help as well!
The essentials in brief:
- Typical symptoms of low blood pressure: dizziness, tiredness, difficulty concentrating, nausea.
- Some foods can raise blood pressure: licorice root, chocolate, salt, spices.
- Some drinks alsocan Increase Blood pressure coffee, green or black tea, as well as isotonic beverages.
A Fast & Easy Solution For Healthy Blood Pressure
There are a few important ways for having healthier blood pressure. – diet and exercise being the two important factors.
Unfortunately, they take time and most people are either NOT patient or need faster results, with less effort…This is the exact problem I ran into with my own parents.
Because of this, I needed to find a simple, easy and fast solution for naturally supporting healthier blood pressure levels in only 30 days, without the use of harmful prescription drugs or following a restrictive diet.
If this is something you’re also interested in, you can easily copy my parent’s “proven formula”, implement it and start seeing and feeling results within days…
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Warnings For People With Certain Health Conditions
For people with infections: Taking fludrocortisone can make an infection worse. Before you begin taking and while you take this medication, tell your doctor if you have any signs or symptoms of an infection, such as fever, chills, or body aches.
For people with tuberculosis: Taking fludrocortisone may make an active tuberculosis infection worse. It can also cause tuberculosis to come back if youve had it before. Let your doctor know if you currently have or have ever had tuberculosis.
For people with glaucoma: Taking fludrocortisone for a long time may increase the pressure in your eyes, causing damage to your eyes and vision. Your risk for other eye infections will also increase while youre taking this medication. Let your doctor know if you have glaucoma or any other eye diseases.
For people with ocular herpes simplex: Taking fludrocortisone may cause perforation, or small holes, in the outer layer of your eye . Let your doctor know if you have ocular herpes simplex.
For people with heart disease: This includes high blood pressure and heart failure. Taking fludrocortisone might cause your blood pressure to increase or make heart failure worse because it makes you retain salt and water. Let your doctor know if you have any heart problems.
For people with diabetes: Taking fludrocortisone can increase your blood sugar levels. You should monitor your blood sugar level more closely. Your doctor may need to increase the doses of your diabetes medications.
Side Effects Of Low Blood Pressure
Low blood pressure is considered a problem when your organs do not get an adequate supply of blood. This can cause symptoms like lightheadedness, dizziness, and fainting. These symptoms are most prominent when a person is lying down or sitting up suddenly. Home remedies can help you get rid of low blood pressure effectively.
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Research And Statistics: How Many People Have High Blood Pressure
Hypertension is a very common condition, in both developing countries and industrialized nations.
According to the AHA, more than 100 million Americans have high blood pressure. That equates to nearly half of all adults in the United States.
High blood pressure is more common in men than in women, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports. About 47 percent of men in the United States have high blood pressure, compared with 43 percent of women.
Only one in four Americans with hypertension have the condition under control.
What Is High Blood Pressure
High blood pressure is when your blood pressure is regularly higher than recommended levels. The clinical term for this is hypertension.
A single high blood pressure reading doesn’t necessarily mean you have hypertension.
You have hypertension if your blood pressure stays high for three separate readings, on three separate occasions, over at least three months.
Sometimes people’s blood pressure goes up because they’re worried about having it taken by the nurse or doctor. If this is a problem, the doctor may get you to do blood pressure readings at home or order a 24-hour monitor to help confirm you have high blood pressure.
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Who Is At Risk For High Blood Pressure
Anyone can develop high blood pressure, but there are certain factors that can increase your risk:
- Age – Blood pressure tends to rise with age
- Race/Ethnicity – High blood pressure is more common in African American adults
- Weight – People who are overweight or have obesity are more likely to develop high blood pressure
- Sex – Before age 55, men are more likely than women to develop high blood pressure. After age 55, women are more likely than men to develop it.
- Lifestyle – Certain lifestyle habits can raise your risk for high blood pressure, such as eating too much sodium or not enough potassium, lack of exercise, drinking too much alcohol, and smoking.
- Family history – A family history of high blood pressure raises the risk of developing high blood pressure