When the heart is pumping blood through your arteries, it does so with enough force that it can reach your body from head to toe. When your heart has to work harder to make this happen, you will find that it increases the amount of pressure it will need to do this process. When that occurs, you will end up having what is known as high blood pressure.
Hypertension is how this ailment is commonly referred to. The problem with this silent killer is there are no warning signs that can lead a person to understanding that they might be experiencing a problem with tit. In fact, there are many people who have no idea they have it until it is too late. Regular visits to your doctor will help you understand if you are suffering from hypertension.
When left uncontrolled, you will experience complications that can include congestive heart failure, kidney failure, stroke, heart attack and even aortic aneurysms. To help avoid any of these from occurring, you need to ensure that you begin to receive proper treatment for this problem and begin to take steps in your life that helps to reduce your risk of all these symptoms. For some weight loss and regular exercise are excellent things you can do to help you reduce your dangers.
When you look at your blood pressure, you will find that it is broken down by sets of numbers. They are listed in a 120/80 format. This is done in millimeters of mercury or mmHg. This is done over the brachial artery as it will give you some of the best possible results.
The first number on top deals with systolic pressure. That means the greatest amount of pressure that is put against the arterial walls when your heart is pumping blood. In turn, the diastolic pressure is the lower number and it will deal with the pressure on the artery walls when the heart is filling and resting between each heartbeat.
In a healthy person, this blood pressure will be less than 120/80. However, when you start reaching certain stages, you will begin to notice additional problems. For example, when you hit pre hypertension, you are going to have a blood pressure that can range from 120-139/80-89. When you hit stage 1 your new reading will be 140-159/90-99 and when you reach stage 2 it will read 160+/100. The higher the reading the more danger you are in for serious side effects.
If you have this problem, you need to take a moment to look at your factors. There are some that can be changed while others are impossible to change.
Risk Factors that Cannot Be Changed
Age – When a person gets older their readings begin to increase. This is because the arteries begin to harden and will result in a higher systolic reading. This will in turn need to be treated by medications.
Is high blood pressure hereditary?
Race – Many people don’t know this, but African Americans have a higher risk for high blood pressure and it appears sooner in their life than in most Caucasians.
Family History – If hypertension is common in your family, there is a good chance you may experience it as well.
Gender – Studies have shown that men have a higher occurrence of hypertension than women.
But while these factors are out of your control, there are things you can do to help avoid future problems.
Risk Factors You Can Change
Obesity – Obese people who have a BMI of 30kg or higher can dramatically reduce their risks by reducing their overall weight. You will begin to see your hypertension numbers start to drop slightly for every couple of kg you reduce on the BMI index.
Sodium – Some people will find that they are sensitive to salt and when consumed, they will experience higher levels of blood pressure than other times. If you have hypertension, then you will want to reduce the amount of sodium you consume. Avoid fast food and be cautious of the amount of sodium that is listed in each item you take. What you are going to find is that some medications contain sodium, so you will need to be cautious when you are using them as well.
Alcohol – Most people will find that alcohol consumption daily will raise your blood pressure. To help avoid this problem you should limit drinking to a single drink at most per day.
Sedentary Lifestyle – Many people who have hypertension will also find that they are not active at all. This will result in you becoming obese and increasing your high blood pressure. A good idea will be to become active and start working out as often as your doctor feels is safe for you.
Sterss – Try to identify if you are suffering from stress and anxiety, there are many stress management techniques which are known to lessen stress. These may include exercise, deep breathing, having more fun etc
Remember that hypertension can be treated, so take the steps to help avoid having an increase in the numbers and begin looking at alternatives that are available to help you reduce the risk factors you have and improve your health in the process. You will find that many of these risk factors when adjusted will show a dramatic change in your overall numbers as well.