What Are The Causes Of High Blood Pressure
Two of the most common causes of high blood pressure are stress and lack of movement. Stress increases blood platelet aggregation, one of the most prominent factors in heart disease. Stress also increases inflammation, another heart disease contributor.
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Family history, especially if your parents or other close relatives have high blood pressure may also play a role. Additionally, carrying extra weight, certain birth control methods and medications, smoking tobacco, and too much alcohol are also risk factors for high blood pressure.
Blood Pressure Monitoring At Home
Many people monitor their blood pressure at home. They often do this to manage or treat a certain health condition. If you monitor your blood pressure at home, keep a record, or log, of the measurements. The record shows your doctor how your blood pressure changes throughout the day. If you take medicines to control your blood pressure, it will help document if they are working. Measuring your blood pressure at home is a good way to take part in managing your health.
Working With Your Doctor Or Nurse
You wont usually make a decision about treatment based solely on the readings you have taken at home. But they may find it useful to know what youre blood pressure is like when youre away from the clinic.
Talk to your doctor or nurse before you start to measure your blood pressure at home. They advise you on when to measure your blood pressure and how often, and this can help you both to be clear about what you are doing and why.
Bring your records with you to your appointments so they can use it to review your treatment.
Make sure your monitor is suitable and you know how to use it
It is a good idea to bring your monitor to the appointment so that your doctor or nurse can check that it is validated and accurate, that it fits properly, and that you know how to use it. They can show you if youre not sure.
For further information on home monitoring, download our booklet, .
Buy A Blood Pressure Monitor
Pharmacies and online merchants sell a variety of blood pressure monitors. Monitors typically range in price from $50 to $100, although a higher price doesn’t necessarily correlate to better quality. Ask your health insurance company whether it will cover part or all of the cost.
When shopping for a blood pressure monitor, look for these features:
Buy a monitor that goes around your upper arm. Dr. Zusman doesn’t recommend wrist or finger monitors because they aren’t as accurate.
An automatic monitor is easiest to use, because it doesn’t require a stethoscope and the cuff inflates by itself. Manual monitors require you to squeeze a bulb to inflate the cuff, which can be hard to do if you have arthritis.
Choose a monitor that meets standards for your age and health conditions according to an organization such as the European Society of Hypertension, dabl Educational Trust, or the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation . Each organization has posted its list of approved devices on its website.
Make sure the cuff fits your arm. If it’s too large or too small, the reading won’t be accurate.
Check that the numbers on the dial or display are large enough for you to read clearly.
Determine what other features you want in a blood pressure monitor. Some monitors will take an average of your last few readings, record your measurements over time, and send them to your doctor via your smartphone.
Whats A Normal Blood Pressure
For most patients, a normal blood pressure reading is less than 120 for systolic and less than 80 for diastolic .
At the doctors office, a systolic measurement of 120 to 139 and a diastolic of 80 to 89 are considered prehypertension for most patients. Anything above 140/90 is considered hypertension.
Away from the doctors office, a reading above 135/85 is considered to be high often, people are more relaxed during readings that dont occur at the doctors office.
Aside from white coat hypertension, other factors can cause your blood pressure to read higher at the doctors office. When a patient has to use the restroom, his/her blood pressure can increase slightly. Likewise, if a patient has to walk up a flight of stairs to reach the doctors office or is frustrated by a long wait to see the physician, his/her blood pressure may increase.
Consider monitoring your blood pressure at home if youre concerned that your regular check-ups dont provide an accurate view of your blood pressure.
If your at-home readings are higher than your target range, request an appointment with your doctor to make sure youre measuring correctly at home, and to rule out another health condition.
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Get Physically Active And Move More With Or Without A Gym
I always recommend that people find something that they enjoy doing to stay in shape. For example, line dancing, walking outside, and riding a bike are all good ways to get active, says Scott Parker, a health and fitness trainer and a national spokesperson for #GoRedGetFit an online fitness challenge for women hosted by the AHA and Macys. Its also important to find other people you like doing the activity with, because that helps you stick with it.
Other exercise options that dont require a gym membership include body weight exercises, like pushups, squats, and jumping jacks. These exercises can be done at home or outside. For people who like going to the gym or running, these can be good ways to build community, notes Parker. Apps like Fitbit and MapMyRun can be helpful if you like keeping track of your steps, calories burned, weight, or number of miles run.
If youre interested in working with a personal trainer but are concerned about the cost, Parker notes that trainers dont have to be expensive. Some trainers offer group sessions that are cheaper than individual training sessions. College students getting degrees in kinesiology, the study of human movement or physical activity, also train people at reduced cost.
Before You Measure Your Blood Pressure
- Avoid things that can raise your blood pressure in the short term. Dont measure your blood pressure within half an hour of eating, smoking, drinking caffeinated drinks such as coffee, or exercising. These can all raise your blood pressure temporarily. If you need to use the toilet, go before you measure your blood pressure.
- Wear loose-fitting clothes. Wear a short-sleeved t-shirt or something with sleeves you can push up easily, nothing tight. This is so that you can fit the cuff around your arm.
- Rest for five minutes before you take your reading. Sit down somewhere quiet, ideally at a desk or table. Have your back supported with your arm resting on a firm surface and your feet flat on the floor. Stay in this position while you take your blood pressure.
- Make sure your arm is supported and at the same level as your heart. Position yourself so that your arm is resting on a surface and is at the same height as your heart. Keep your arm and hand relaxed, not tensed.
- Make sure you are relaxed and comfortable. If you are anxious or uncomfortable, your blood pressure will rise temporarily.
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What Are The Causes Of Low Blood Pressure
One of the biggest contributors to low blood pressure is dehydration. Did you know that over 75% of people in the U.S. are chronically dehydrated? A survey of 3,003 Americans found that 75% had a net fluid loss, resulting in chronic dehydration. This means they are either not drinking enough or absorbing hydration effectively. The best kind of water to use for just good solid hydration is distilled or reverse osmosis water. Do not add anything to it, because it changes how that liquid is utilized by the body, so just plain water is key!
Low blood pressure might seem desirable, and for some people, low blood pressure does not cause any harm. However, for many people, abnormally low blood pressure can cause dizziness and fainting. In severe cases, low blood pressure can be life-threatening.
Other causes of low blood pressure are pregnancy, endocrine problems, blood loss, severe infection, severe allergic reaction, and lack of nutrients in your body.
Eat Garlic Or Take Garlic Extract Supplements
Fresh garlic or garlic extract are both widely used to lower blood pressure.
A meta-analysis found that for people with high blood pressure, garlic supplements reduced their systolic blood pressure by up to about 5 mm Hg and reduced their diastolic blood pressure as much as 2.5 mm Hg .
According to a 2009 clinical study, a time-release garlic extract preparation may have a greater effect on blood pressure than regular garlic powder tablets .
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Home Monitoring And Blood Pressure Goals
Home blood pressure monitoring can help guide your treatment by showing whether your medicines are working or if you need to take a different approach. A study published in March 2013 in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes found that people who monitored their blood pressure at home were more likely to reach their blood pressure goals than those who were monitored only by their doctor.
Anyone who has high blood pressure, or is at risk for it, can benefit from home blood pressure monitoring, especially women with diabetes or kidney disease. You might also want to consider taking your blood pressure at home if your levels tend to fluctuate. Getting an accurate accounting of the variations will help your doctor better treat your blood pressure.
Women with symptoms such as dizziness or headaches can also take regular readings “to see if their symptoms correlate to their blood pressure,” Dr. Zusman says.
Some conditions can make it harder to take your own blood pressureparticularly if you have an irregular heart rhythm known as atrial fibrillation. If this is uncontrolled, you may not be able to get an accurate reading with a home blood pressure monitor. Even if your arrhythmia is controlled, you may need to take your blood pressure several times in a row for accuracy.
If you’re interested in home blood pressure monitoring, here’s how to get started.
When To See The Doctor
The doctor should check your monitor at least once a year. This ensures that the measurements are accurate.
Only a doctor can diagnose you with high blood pressure. Contact your doctor if you have high readings for several days. Be sure to take your blood pressure log with you to the visit.
Hypotension is low blood pressure. This occurs when your systolic pressure is consistently below 90 or is 25 points below your normal reading. Contact your doctor if you have low readings. Hypotension can be a sign of shock, which is life threatening. Call your doctor right away if you are dizzy or lightheaded.
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Dr Rupali Datta Clinical Dietitian At Fortis
1. Eat small portions frequently: Sneak healthy snacking sessions in-between the major meals of the day to avoid long gaps. Eating small portions several times of the day helps in preventing the sudden drop in blood pressure that one may experience after meals. So, if you are eating three full meals a day, it would be better to rather have them distributed in to five small meals a day. This one’s a great home remedy for also people who have diabetes.
Home remedies for low blood pressure: eat small portions frequently
2. Have adequate salt: Excess salt is bad, but on the other hand it is required by your body in moderate quantities. According to the World Health Organisation, your daily diet must contain at one teaspoon of added salt besides what you derive from natural from fruits and vegetables. In summers or if you exercise daily, keep some lime water with a pinch of salt handy. Salt works like an instant pick-me-up. Make sure you do not have too much salt too that may lead to problems like water retention along with high blood pressure.
Home remedies for low blood pressure: Excess salt is bad, but it is required by your body in moderate quantitiesHome remedies for low blood pressure: Drink at least 2 to 3 litres of water every dayHome remedies for low blood pressure: Caffeinated beverages like tea or coffee may help boost your blood pressureHome remedies for low blood pressure: Chew five to six tulsi leaves every morning
How Long Does It Take To Come Down
The length of time it takes to lower blood pressure will vary from person to person.
In addition, some methods for lowering blood pressure will work for some people, but not for others. A person should start seeing changes within a few days to weeks of making the necessary lifestyle and dietary changes.
High blood pressure rarely causes symptoms. People may only discover that they have high blood pressure during a routine visit to their doctor, or after developing complications, such as a heart attack or stroke.
Some symptoms that may be indirectly related to high blood pressure include:
- blood spots in the eyes
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Sudden Spike In Blood Pressure Can Be Serious
Blood pressure is a measurement of the force that blood applies to your arterial walls as it pumps from your heart throughout your body. It also represents how hard your heart is working to push the blood. When blood pressure is higher, it means the heart must work harder to push blood through your system. In turn, the risk of heart disease or heart attack increases.
According to 2014 data, high blood pressure accounts for roughly 1,100 deaths every day in the United States, and only about half of all people with high blood pressure have it under control.
Disturbingly, most people may not even be aware that they have the condition, or are at least on the verge of becoming hypertensive. Some risk factors for high blood pressure include:
- Eating a high sodium/low potassium diet
- Not getting enough exercise/physical activity
- Overactive thyroid
- Overactive adrenal glands
A normal blood pressure is in the range of 120 mmHg/80 mmHg . The higher number represents systolic blood pressure and the lower represents diastolic. Prehypertension arises when systolic and diastolic pressures exceed these numbers, and hypertensionor high blood pressurearises when blood pressure reaches 140 mmHg/90mmHg.
Sometimes, however, something causes blood pressure to spike unexpectedlyand the higher your resting blood pressure is, the greater your risk of suffering a severe cardiac event becomes. Therefore, knowing how to lower blood pressure fast is very important.
Eat More Potassium And Less Sodium
Increasing your potassium intake and cutting back on salt can also lower your blood pressure .
Potassium is a double winner: It lessens the effects of salt in your system and eases tension in your blood vessels. However, diets rich in potassium may be harmful to people with kidney disease, so talk with your doctor before increasing your potassium intake.
Its easy to eat more potassium. So many foods are naturally high in potassium. Here are a few:
- other processed snacks
Foods labeled low fat are usually high in salt and sugar to compensate for the loss of fat. Fat is what gives food taste and makes you feel full.
Cutting down on or even better, cutting out processed food will help you eat less salt, less sugar, and fewer refined carbohydrates. All of this can result in lower blood pressure.
Make it a practice to check nutrition labels. According to the Food and Drug Administration , a sodium listing of 5 percent or less on a food label is considered low, while 20 percent or more is considered high (
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Do You Know Some Habits That Increase Your Blood Pressure
There are some habits that can dangerously increase our health, so that we cause the appearance of what is medically known as arterial hypertension. In fact, it is estimated that in 95% of people with high blood pressure there is no organic cause, so it is mainly due to certain factors / habits and hereditary dispositions.
Regarding habits, do you know which are the most common ?. We discover them below:
- Smoke:Tobacco is one of the causes related to arterial hypertension. Although it does not have a direct influence, it is known that nicotine increases the risk of developing diseases such as strokes or strokes.
- Alcohol:The consumption of alcohol, even in small amounts, causes our heart to beat faster and pump more blood, so that it increases our blood pressure.
- Overweight and obesity:It is usual that people with a greater weight tend to have a very high blood pressure. Therefore, it is estimated that abdominal obesity tends to increase blood pressure, which then decreases and is controlled as the weight decreases.
So, To control blood pressure or even prevent hypertension, it is essential to avoid the first two habits, as well as lose weight and keep it at normal levels, recommended according to our height and physical complexion. This article is published for informational purposes only. It can not and should not replace the consultation with a Physician. We advise you to consult your Trusted Doctor.
Take Blood Pressure Medications As Prescribed
The American Heart Association state that people should take their blood pressure medications according to their doctors exact instructions. People should never quit or cut back on their medications unless their doctor has advised them to do so.
If a person has trouble remembering to take their blood pressure medications, they should set up daily reminders on their phone or other devices.
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