- Diseases, Disorders & Conditions
High Blood Pressure, Hypertension: How To Reduce Risk
What is Blood Pressure
High Blood Pressure: What Is It, And How To Reduce It
This is useful information for every family with a history of high blood pressure/elevated blood pressure (hypertension) or other non-communicable diseases
High Blood Pressure, otherwise known as “Hypertension”, is a non-communicable disease that affects 1 in 3 adults in the United States. Having Hypertension means a fast heart rate and that that when your heart pushes blood out into the arteries, it pushes it with an increased blood flow or “pressure” against the resistance of the arteries, which causes a strain on them. The disease affects colored people more than it does the Caucasian race, but every person, male and female are at risk. Usually this disease affects females over 55 and males over 45. Over half of all Americans over 60 have Elevated Blood Pressure (Hypertension)
High Blood Pressure (Elevated Blood Pressure) usually causes no symptoms, and if it does, there is no way to know how early or late they will appear. The symptoms are very vague, such as, headache, dizziness, blurred vision, or nausea, and often suggest a different disorder. This disease is called “the silent killer”. Most people do not know they have high blood pressure until they have had it measured accurately.
The only way to detect High Blood Pressure is to have it measured by a sphygmomanometer, which is a cuff that goes around your arm and is inflated.
Causes of High Blood Pressure
There are some controllable factors that contribute to the disease. If you are trying to get a low blood pressure, avoid the use of: birth control pills, misuse of alcohol, drugs and smoking, pregnancy, an inactive lifestyle, sodium (salt), being overweight/obese, and stress.
Some uncontrollable risk factors of elevated blood pressure are: a hereditary predisposition, race, increasing age, a thyroid dysfunction, gender (males have a higher risk than females.)
There are several measures one can take to reduce their risk of developing High Blood Pressure, and even obtain a low blood pressure. These include: Eating a nutritious, low-fat diet, exercising regularly, decreasing sodium intake, maintaining a healthy weight, using alcohol in moderation, quitting smoking, and reducing stress.
If the above steps are followed, High Blood Pressure can be reduced dramatically, but in some cases special medication is needed. Today many of these medications are safe and any side effects tend to be minor. Often, though, two or more medicines work better than one, but they should all be prescribed by your doctor.
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