Did you know that over 75 million Americans have high blood pressure?
That means one in every three adults have high blood pressure.
Are you worried that you may be suffering from high blood pressure? If you’re interested in learning how to take better care of your health, understanding what high blood pressure is and how to manage your condition is essential.
That’s why today, we’ve created a complete guide to help you better understand everything you need to know about high blood pressure. Keep reading to learn more!
What Is High Blood Pressure?
High blood pressure is also referred to as hypertension. This medical condition happens when the blood pressure, which is the force of blood pushing against the walls of your blood vessels, is too high on a consistent basis.
Whenever your heart beats, your blood pressure pushes your blood through your blood vessels. These blood vessels include veins, couplers, and arteries.
There are two different types of high blood pressure.
Primary hypertension is also referred to as essential hypertension. This diagnosis comes when doctors are unable to identify the cause of your high blood pressure. This type of blood pressure problem can take several years to develop.
Secondary hypertension happens when a medication or a problem with your health is causing your blood pressure to be elevated. Adrenaline problems, certain medications, kidney problems, and sleep apnea can all be contributing factors for developing secondary hypertension.
What Are the Symptoms of High Blood Pressure?
One of the most dangerous aspects of high blood pressure is that many people don’t know they have it. The only way to know if you’re suffering from high blood pressure is to have your blood pressure regularly checked by a doctor.
It’s especially important to have regular check-ups on your blood pressure if you are related to people who also suffer from high blood pressure.
The most common symptoms of high blood pressure include:
- Chest pain
- Vision problems
- Fatigue headaches
- Irregular heartbeat
- Blood in urine
- Pounding in your neck, chest, and ears
If you have noticed that you have any of these up above listed symptoms, you must make an immediate appointment with your doctor. These symptoms may also be a sign that you’re having a crisis that could lead to a stroke or heart attack.
What Causes High Blood Pressure?
The exact cause of high blood pressure hasn’t yet been discovered by scientists, however, researchers found that several contributing factors can increase your chances of developing high blood pressure.
These contributing factors are:
- Chronic a few things
- Thyroid disorders
- Adrenal disorders
- Sleep apnea
- Shortness of breath
- Changes in vision
- Being obese or overweight
- Consuming too much alcohol
- Lack of physical activity
Eating a healthy diet, consuming alcohol in moderation, keeping physically active, and managing your stress levels are the best ways you can prevent your chances of developing high blood pressure.
How Is High Blood Pressure Diagnosed?
You can be diagnosed with high blood pressure by a blood pressure monitor. Most doctors will have your blood pressure tested with a blood pressure monitor when you go for a checkup.
To test your blood pressure, a nurse places a band around your arm. This band is attached to a pump and a blood pressure meter.
As the nurse squeezes the pump, it will tighten around your arm. The nurse will be able to read two numbers that measure blood pressure.
The first number that they’ll read is a systolic number, which is the measurement of when your heart is squeezing blood out. The bottom number that the rate is the diastolic reading, which is the pressure that your heart put out when it’s filling up with blood.
- When the top number is 120 and the bottom number is less than 80, you’re in a normal blood pressure range
- When the tub levels are between 120 to 139, with the bottom numbers between 80 to 89, you have pre-hypertension levels.
- Stage one high blood pressure has the top numbers between 140 to 159 on top, well the bottom numbers are 90 to 99.
- Stage two high blood pressure as a top number had 160 your higher with 100 or lower with the bottle number.
If you don’t go to the doctor’s office frequently, you should have your blood pressure checked at least once every two years. If you’ve been diagnosed with high blood pressure in the past or you have loved one who also has high blood pressure, you should have your blood pressure checked more frequently.
Blood pressure levels do change throughout the day. Your doctor may conduct more tests if your blood pressure level stays too high to see if there’s an underlying medical condition that needs to be treated. Some of these tests can include:
- Cholesterol screening
- Blood tests
- Urine test
- Heart and kidney ultrasound
The results of these blood tests can help your doctor to figure out if there’s a medical condition that’s causing your body to regulate your blood pressure. Your medical professional will also get better insight if your blood pressure is affecting your organs.
Getting Treatment for Your High Blood Pressure
If you’ve been diagnosed with high blood pressure, your doctor will talk to you about treatment options and lifestyle changes that you need to make to get your blood pressure back down to a healthy level.