/80 To 139/8: You Might Need Medication
These numbers qualify as high blood pressure and you need to take action. But your doctor will probably suggest that you try out lifestyle changes first before adding drugs — unless you have other health problems.
One thing to keep in mind: Guidelines are different for older people. If you’re 60 or older, the American College of Physicians and the American Academy of Family Physicians recommend you start treatment if your top blood pressure number is 130 or higher.
Secondary High Blood Pressure
Some cases of high blood pressure are the result of underlying factors or cause and this is known as secondary high blood pressure.
Underlying factors include:
- kidney conditions, such as a kidney infection, or kidney disease
- narrowing of the arteries
- hormonal conditions, such as Cushing’s syndrome
- conditions that affect the bodys tissue, such as lupus
- medication, such as the oral contraceptive pill, or the type of painkillers that are known as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs , such as ibuprofen
- recreational drugs, such as cocaine, amphetamines and crystal meth
Occasionally, a rise in blood pressure can result from taking herbal remedies, such as herbal supplements.
Many People Who Have High Blood Pressure Dont Know It
About 1 in 3 U.S. adults with high blood pressure arent even aware they have it and are not being treated to control their blood pressure.6
Even though most people with uncontrolled high blood pressure have health insurance and visit a health care team member at least twice a year, the condition is often not diagnosed.7 CDC is working with health care professionals to find patients with high blood pressure who are hiding in plain sightexternal icon.
Ask your health care team what your blood pressure numbers mean and if they are too high. Stick to your treatment plan and follow your providers advice if you are diagnosed with high blood pressure.
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How Is High Blood Pressure Diagnosed
High blood pressure usually has no symptoms. So the only way to find out if you have it is to get regular blood pressure checks from your health care provider. Your provider will use a gauge, a stethoscope or electronic sensor, and a blood pressure cuff. He or she will take two or more readings at separate appointments before making a diagnosis.
|Blood Pressure Category|
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For children and teens, the health care provider compares the blood pressure reading to what is normal for other kids who are the same age, height, and sex.
Excessive Salt Raises Blood Pressure
Too much sodium can cause water retention that puts increased pressure on your heart and blood vessels. People with high blood pressure and those at a high risk for developing hypertension, including adults over 50 and black men and women, should have no more than 1,500 milligrams of sodium daily of salt.
Even people with normal levels should eat salt in moderation. Stick to no more than 2,300 mg of sodium , per day.
Most dietary sodium comes from processed foods. Rules of thumb are to choose foods with 5% or less of the daily value of sodium per serving and opt for fresh poultry, fish and lean meats, rather than canned, smoked or processed. Similarly, fresh or frozen vegetables are better than canned.
A study published in the New England Journal of Medicine found that if people cut just 1/2 teaspoon of salt per day, it could help lower the number of new cases of heart disease per year by up to 120,000.
Further, potassium found in foods like sweet potatoes, spinach, bananas, oranges, low-fat milk and halibut can counterbalance the pressure-increasing effects of sodium by helping to rid the body of excess sodium.
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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.
Living With High Blood Pressure
Controlling your high blood pressure is a lifelong commitment. You will always need to monitor your weight, make healthy food choices, exercise, learn to cope with stress, avoid smoking, and limit your alcohol intake. If you need medicine to control your high blood pressure, you will likely need it all your life.
Additionally, you will need to get used to regular blood pressure checks. Your doctor may want you to come to the office regularly. Or you may be asked to check your blood pressure at home and keep track of your numbers for your doctor. Some pharmacies and retail clinics have blood pressure machines on site. You can buy your own, automated arm blood pressure cuff for use at home. Your doctor may want you to check your blood pressure several times a day. Another option is to use an ambulatory blood pressure monitor.
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What Underlying Conditions Does The Cdc Recommend For Vaccine Eligibility
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , âPeople aged 16 years and older who have underlying medical conditions that increase the risk of serious, life-threatening complications from COVID-19, should be among those offered COVID-19 vaccine first.â The underlying conditions that the CDC lists are:
However, states are not required to distribute the vaccine in order that these conditions are listed â so if youâre looking to find out when you can get vaccinated, youâll want to check your stateâs vaccine eligibility guidelines.
Is There Any Lower Blood Pressure Medicine
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What Underlying Conditions Qualify You For The Vaccine In Your State
Having a condition identified by the CDC as definitely or possibly high-risk doesnât automatically qualify you where you live.
âThe criteria for vaccine eligibility vary from state to state and may not match the criteria outlined by the CDC, so it’s important to visit your state vaccination website for guidance,â Richardson explains.
You can check your stateâs current eligibility guidelines for the COVID vaccine by selecting your state or territory in the CDCâs dropdown menu here, in the blue box labeled âHow Do I Get A Vaccine?â By checking your stateâs standards, youâll be one step closer to answering the question of the year â and getting yourself your shot.
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Good Sleep Can Prevent And Manage High Blood Pressure
Most people experience a dip in blood pressure during the deepest stage of sleep , which is the body’s normal and healthy reaction to sleep. Not having that nighttime dip is a risk factor for heart disease and may increase daytime blood pressure.
Typically people spend 90 minutes to two hours in slow wave sleep per night. A recent study published in Hypertension found that men who got less slow wave sleep each night were a higher risk for hypertension than men who got more deep sleep.
While sleep disorders, like sleep apnea, and age can both affect the amount of deep sleep you get, there are steps you can take to ensure a good night’s sleep. Getting seven to eight hours of sleep a night, maintaining a consistent sleep schedule and being more active during the day can help improve the quality of your sleep.
Surprising Facts About High Blood Pressure
What you dont know about high blood pressure could hurt you. High blood pressure affects nearly half of the adult population in the United States,1 yet many people who have the condition dont know they have it.
Uncontrolled high blood pressure raises the risk for heart disease and stroke, which are leading causes of death in the United States. Fortunately, high blood pressure is treatable and preventable.
To lower your risk, get your blood pressure checked regularly and take action to control your blood pressure if it is high.
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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.
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What Lowers Blood Pressure That Isnt Drugs
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Heart Attack And Heart Disease
High blood pressure can damage your arteries by making them less elastic, which decreases the flow of blood and oxygen to your heart and leads to heart disease. In addition, decreased blood flow to the heart can cause:
- Chest pain, also called angina.
- Heart attack, which happens when the blood supply to your heart is blocked and heart muscle begins to die without enough oxygen. The longer the blood flow is blocked, the greater the damage to the heart.
- Heart failure, a condition that means your heart cant pump enough blood and oxygen to your other organs.
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Why Wont My Blood Pressure Go Down
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The prevalence of hypertension varies across regions and country income groups. The WHO African Region has the highest prevalence of hypertension while the WHO Region of the Americas has the lowest prevalence of hypertension .
The number of adults with hypertension increased from 594 million in 1975 to 1.13 billion in 2015, with the increase seen largely in low- and middle-income countries. This increase is due mainly to a rise in hypertension risk factors in those populations.
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Medicines For High Blood Pressure
Medications can help control high blood pressure and reduce the damage from high blood pressure, but they do not cure it. Usually, medication will need to be taken for life, unless losing weight and the lifestyle changes are so successful that your blood pressure returns to normal levels without medication.There a variety of medicines that can be used to lower blood pressure. Each of these groups of medicines works differently. Sometimes 2 or 3 medications are needed and it may take time to find the right combination and dosage. Tell your doctor or pharmacist about any side effects you may have and follow instructions carefully.
Examples of medicines to treat blood pressure include:
- ACE inhibitors such as cilazapril, lisinopril, quinapril, enalapril, perindopril.
- ARBs such as candesartan, losartan.
- Beta blockers such as bisoprolol, metoprolol, propranolol.
- Calcium channel blockers such as amlodipine, diltiazem, felodipine.
- Diuretics such as bendroflumethiazide, chlortalidone, indapamide.
- medications to lower cholesterol .