Wednesday, June 15, 2022
HomeWhy Do You Have High Blood Pressure

Why Do You Have High Blood Pressure

Why Is It Important To Know If You Have High Blood Pressure

Why Do You Have High Blood Pressure?

Early detection of high blood pressure is very important. Often referred to as the silent killer because it may show no symptoms, high blood pressure puts you at an increased risk for heart disease, heart failure, and stroke, among other things. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in 2013, more than 360,000 deaths in the United States included high blood pressure as a primary or contributing cause.

How Blood Pressure Is Measured

Hypertension can be mild, moderate or severe. Your blood pressure is naturally higher when you are exerting yourself, such as during physical exercise. It is only a concern if your blood pressure is high when you are at rest, because this means your heart is overworked and your arteries have extra stress in their walls.Blood pressure readings are a combination of two measurements. These are:

  • Systolic is the highest pressure against the arteries as the heart pumps. The normal systolic pressure is usually between 110 and 130mmHg.
  • Diastolic is the pressure against the arteries as the heart relaxes and fills with blood. The normal diastolic pressure is usually between 70 and 80mmHg.

Favorite Online Support Networks

This online support group from the American Heart Association allows you to connect with others going through an array of heart issues, including hypertension. Ask questions, share your story, and get peer support from others going through similar experiences to take control of their heart health.

Also Check: Can Claritin Raise Your Blood Pressure

What Should I Avoid Eating If I Have High Blood Pressure Or Kidney Disease

If you have kidney disease, avoid foods and beverages that are high in sodium.

Additional steps you can take to meet your blood pressure goals may include eating heart-healthy and low-sodium meals, quitting smoking, being active, getting enough sleep, and taking your medicines as prescribed. You should also limit alcoholic drinksno more than two per day for men and one per day for womenbecause consuming too many alcoholic beverages raises blood pressure.

In addition, a health care professional may recommend that you eat moderate or reduced amounts of protein.

Proteins break down into waste products that the kidneys filter from the blood. Eating more protein than your body needs may burden your kidneys and cause kidney function to decline faster. However, eating too little protein may lead to malnutrition, a condition that occurs when the body does not get enough nutrients.

If you have kidney disease and are on a restricted protein diet, a health care professional will use blood tests to monitor your nutrient levels.

High Blood Pressure: Why Me

Clinical Study to Test New High Blood Pressure Treatment ...

ARCHIVED CONTENT: As a service to our readers, Harvard Health Publishing provides access to our library of archived content. Please note the date each article was posted or last reviewed. No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.

I go to the gym, and I never add salt. So why do I have high blood pressure? Despite its astonishing prevalence of one in three Americans, many people struggle with the diagnosis of high blood pressure, or hypertension. Its worth exploring why, because being an active participant in your care is crucial for optimal blood pressure control.

Certain features make any diagnosis easier to accept:

  • First, people are more likely to accept a diagnosis if they have symptoms. A person with cough and fever will believe a diagnosis of pneumonia. But someone who feels fine would not.
  • Next, people more readily accept a diagnosis if it is not serious. Most people wont question the diagnosis of athletes foot, because creams can cure it. Diagnoses that carry worse prognoses are usually harder to receive.
  • Finally, people accept a diagnosis better when they understand its cause. Some diseases have clear causes: Down syndrome and older maternal age, HIV infection and contaminated needles. A smoker who learns he has lung cancer may not be shocked. But non-smokers who receive this diagnosis usually ask, Why me?

You May Like: Does Iwatch Do Blood Pressure

The Relationship Between High Cholesterol And High Blood Pressure

High blood pressure and high cholesterol both damage the inner lining of blood vessels, known as the endothelium.

Over time, endothelial damage contributes to the buildup of cholesterol plaques and inflammatory cells in the blood vessels throughout the body, known as atherosclerosis.

Endothelial damage also results in improper regulation of blood vessel dilation. The result is stiffened, narrowed arteries that do not respond the way they should.

Prednisone And Low Blood Pressure

If you are being weaned off of prednisone and are taking medications to help lower your blood pressure, be sure to discuss the effect the changes in prednisone could have on your blood pressure and monitor for the symptoms of low blood pressure.

Symptoms of low blood pressure can include:

  • Dizziness or feeling lightheaded
  • Blurred vision

You May Like: Does Claritin D Raise Blood Pressure

Treatment And Medication Options For High Blood Pressure

Most people who have high blood pressure will likely need lifelong treatment to help ward off or delay serious health problems brought on by the condition.

Options to treat high blood pressure may include eating a healthy diet with less salt, taking medication, and incorporating additional lifestyle changes. These include exercise, limiting alcohol intake, smoking cessation, and managing stress.

Number Of Pregnant Women With High Blood Pressure Rises More Than Thirteenfold Since 1970 Study Finds

HBP 042- Why do you have High Blood Pressure

If not treated, high blood pressure during pregnancy can lead to a number of complications for both the mother and the baby. Hypertension can affect a mother’s kidneys and increase her risk of future heart disease, kidney disease, and stroke.

It can also increase the risk of preterm delivery, low birth weight, preeclampsia, placental abruption, cesarean delivery, and HELLP syndrome .

Also Check: Reverse Pulmonary Hypertension

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:

  • age
  • smoking
  • obesity
  • having a high level of cholesterol in your blood
  • having a family history of cardiovascular disease .

Should You Panic If Your Blood Pressure Is Slightly Higher

While a 1.1 or 2.5 mmHg increase might not seem much on an individual basis, Dr. Laffin says it can turn into a huge problem if everyone in the country is seeing those changes. And if left uncontrolled, high blood pressure can lead to an increased risk for strokes, heart attacks, kidney disease and other health threats.

If youre seeing higher numbers because you werent taking your blood pressure medication regularly, then its time to get back on track.

It should be a wake-up call to get back to your doctor and take your medications regularly. Now, some people may need to change their medication doses and they might need to start monitoring blood pressure more regularly at home. Thats really what the take-home message of this study is dont neglect your chronic medical conditions, especially cardiovascular disease.

Recommended Reading: Lower Bloodpressure

What Causes Your Blood Pressure To Suddenly Get High

  • What Causes Your Blood Pressure to Suddenly Get High? Center
  • Hypertension or high blood pressure is a medical condition where the pressure in the arteries is persistently elevated. The heart pumps blood into the arteries, and it is circulated to all parts of the body. Hypertension develops when the heart constantly needs to exert higher force to deliver the blood to the organs through the arteries. Since a hypertensive heart must work harder to deliver blood, hypertension can increase the risk of cardiovascular disease, heart attack and heart failure. Also, the blood vessels in people with hypertension are narrower, putting them at risk of stroke, kidney disease and vision loss.

    There are many reasons for high blood pressure. Some possible causes include caffeine, acute stress or anxiety, certain medications , combinations of medications, recreational drugs, sudden or acute pain, dehydration and white coat effect .

    How Does Eating Diet And Nutrition Affect High Blood Pressure And Kidney Disease

    I Have High Blood Pressure: What Do I Need to Know ...

    Following a healthy eating plan can help lower your blood pressure. Reducing the amount of sodium in your diet is an important part of any healthy eating plan. Your health care professional may recommend the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension eating plan. DASH focuses on fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and other foods that are healthy for your heart and lower in sodium, which often comes from salt. The DASH eating plan

    • is low in fat and cholesterol
    • features fat-free or low-fat milk and dairy products, fish, poultry, and nuts
    • suggests less red meat, sweets, added sugars, and sugar-containing beverages
    • is rich in nutrients, protein, and fiber

    A registered dietitian can help tailor your diet to your kidney disease. If you have congestive heart failure or edema, a diet low in sodium intake can help reduce edema and lower blood pressure. Reducing saturated fat and cholesterol can help control high levels of lipids, or fats, in the blood.

    People with advanced kidney disease should speak with their health care professional about their diet.

    Don’t Miss: Can You Have Heart Problems With Normal Blood Pressure

    What Are The Symptoms Of High Blood Pressure And Kidney Disease

    Most people with high blood pressure do not have symptoms. In rare cases, high blood pressure can cause headaches.

    Early CKD also may not have symptoms. As kidney disease gets worse, some people may have swelling, called edema. Edema happens when the kidneys cannot get rid of extra fluid and salt. Edema can occur in the legs, feet, ankles, orless oftenin the hands or face.

    Symptoms of advanced kidney disease can include

    • loss of appetite, nausea, or vomiting
    • drowsiness, feeling tired, or sleep problems
    • headaches or trouble concentrating
    • chest pain or shortness of breath

    How Is Blood Pressure Measured

    Blood pressure is measured using a machine called a blood pressure monitor.

    A cuff is put over your arm. This cuff is attached to a machine which measures the pressure inside your arteries. When the machine is switched on the cuff tightens and then slowly loosens again. It is quick and painless. At the end, the machine will give a blood pressure reading.

    Blood pressure is measured in millimetres of mercury .

    A blood pressure reading contains two numbers and will be written as a figure like 120/75

    The first number is the pressure when your heart beats . The second number is when your heart relaxes .

    During a blood pressure test, a blood pressure cuff is wrapped around your arm so a blood pressure monitor can measure your systolic and diastolic blood pressure.

    Recommended Reading: Does Claritin Cause High Blood Pressure

    What Is The Treatment For High Blood Pressure

    Mild high blood pressure can often be treated by making lifestyle changes, including:

    • losing weight
    • limiting your alcohol intake to no more than 2 drinks per day for men, or 1 drink per day for women with high blood pressure

    However, lifestyle changes may not be enough. Some people also need medication to help reduce blood pressure levels to normal. While medicines are usually very effective at lowering blood pressure, they may cause side effects in some people.

    Usually doctors will start a person on a low dose of a medicine and see how it goes. If it doesnt work well enough, or if there are troublesome side effects, other medicines will be used, sometimes in combination, until the blood pressure is controlled. This can take time. Some people will take medicines for life, although others will find that continuing to lose weight and changing their diet reduces the need for medicines.

    Someone whose blood pressure is very high or causing symptoms such as headache, or if they have conditions such as heart disease or diabetes, may need urgent treatment with medicines to bring the blood pressure down to normal levels.

    The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners recommends that you regularly review with your doctor or specialist any medications you are taking for high blood pressure or high cholesterol to assess the ongoing benefits and risks. For further information, visit the Choosing Wisely Australia website.

    Maintain A Healthy Weight

    Hypertension, High Blood Pressure, and Why You Need to Check Your Blood Pressure

    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.
    Sex
    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

    Recommended Reading: Bloodpressure Treatment

    What Is High Blood Pressure

    High blood pressure, also called hypertension, is blood pressure that is higher than normal. Your blood pressure changes throughout the day based on your activities. Having blood pressure measures consistently above normal may result in a diagnosis of high blood pressure .

    The higher your blood pressure levels, the more risk you have for other health problems, such as heart disease, heart attack, and stroke.

    Your health care team can diagnose high blood pressure and make treatment decisions by reviewing your systolic and diastolic blood pressure levels and comparing them to levels found in certain guidelines.

    The guidelines used to diagnose high blood pressure may differ from health care professional to health care professional:

    • Some health care professionals diagnose patients with high blood pressure if their blood pressure is consistently 140/90 mm Hg or higher.2 This limit is based on a guideline released in 2003, as seen in the table below.
    • Other health care professionals diagnose patients with high blood pressure if their blood pressure is consistently 130/80 mm Hg or higher.1 This limit is based on a guideline released in 2017, as seen in the table below.
    systolic: 130 mm Hg or higherdiastolic: 80 mm Hg or higher

    If you are diagnosed with high blood pressure, talk with your health care team about your blood pressure levels and how these levels affect your treatment plan.

    Symptoms Of High Blood Pressure

    High blood pressure doesnt tend to cause symptoms so its always good to know where you stand. In addition to having your healthcare provider check it regularly, you can monitor it as well with a home blood pressure monitor.

    Here are the ranges to be aware of:

    • Under 130/80 mmHg is normal.
    • 130-139/OR diastolic between 80 and 89 mmHg indicates Stage 1 hypertension.
    • 140/90 mmHg or higher indicates Stage 2 hypertension.
    • 180/120 mmHg or higher indicates a hypertensive crisis and requires emergency care.

    We dont have symptoms from high blood pressure. Its just there. The pandemic has been going on for almost two years now and we dont know when its going to end. But we do know that uncontrolled hypertension and elevated blood pressure over the long term increases cardiovascular risk.

    Recommended Reading: Blood Pressure Effect

    Family History Of Hypertension

    While exercising and healthy eating go a long way towards lowering your blood pressure, there are some risk factors that you may not be able to change.

    Genetics is a major contributing factor when it comes to your hearts health, and blood pressure can be hereditary. If you are aware of your immediate family being hypertensive or having had a heart attack before the age of 45 , you should make it a priority to visit a doctor.

    Understanding family history is important to recognize the cause of high blood pressure, further evaluating whether it is genetic, poor eating habits or lack of exercise repeating itself across generations is also essential.

    Even if you have a family history of high blood pressure, it doesnt mean that you cant take actions to avoid another heart episode in the family. Recognizing high blood pressure is challenging, but with regular blood pressure readings, you can easily track it.

    What Is High Blood Pressure And Who Should Care

    How does Hypertension work and what can you do?

    High blood pressure is common in the United States. In 2019, the American Heart Association reported that nearly half of all American adults have high blood pressure.

    But what is high blood pressure? And who needs to be aware of it? High blood pressure is when the pressure in your blood vessels is frequently higher than normal. It tends to run in families. Depending on the cause it can affect people of any age, but its more common in older folks. Its also more common in people:

    • Who are black

    • Eye damage

    • Death

    Here well explain some symptoms of HBP, when to get medical help, and what you can do to monitor your own blood pressure and stay healthy.

    Also Check: Can Low Blood Pressure Cause Heart Attack

    RELATED ARTICLES

    Popular Articles