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High Blood Pressure- An Overview

What is high blood pressure? Common causes and treatments. Different factors that can put you at a higher risk.

Joshua West

on 2 October 2012

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Transcript of High Blood Pressure- An Overview

Hypertension- a.k.a. High blood pressure Hypertension is commonly called high blood pressure.
When blood pushes on the walls of our arteries it produces a force (a pressure) on our arterial walls, this is referred to as "blood pressure."
It is measured by two numbers: systolic (when the heart beats) and diastolic (when the heart is muscle is relaxed), (systolic is placed over diastolic like a fraction) and it is measured in mm HG (millimeters of mercury).
When a persons blood pressure is above the normal (120mmHG/80mmHG) that person is said to have high blood pressure. What is hypertension? The best thing to do if you believe you may be at risk is to have a health care provider administer a simple test and the results will determine if you do or do not.
High blood pressure is called the "silent killer" because most of the time it has no symptoms and therefore goes unnoticed.
Leaving high blood pressure untreated leads to many problems such as damage to blood vessels as well as organs.
When blood pressure is elevated, it stretches the walls of the arteries. Prolonged stretching of the arteries can cause them to develop scar tissue which can then cause buildup of blood cells and/or plaque.
These build-ups cause hardening and weakening of the blood vessels and in some cases it can completely close off an artery causing a heart attack (a completely blocked coronary artery).
Weakening of blood vessels can lead to stroke or possibly an aneurism.
Hardening causes the blood vessels to lose elasticity. This means that when blood pressure rises to send more blood to organs and tissues that need oxygen-rich blood, the demand cannot be met resuling in damage to those tissues and organs. Risk Factors Information:
_UCM_002020_SubHomePage.jsp References Hypertension: Symptoms & What It Can Do Genetics- If someone in your imediate family has high blood pressure, you are also a risk for having it.
Age- Older people are generally at a higher risk than younger people for developing hypertension. However, age does not exclude anyone from being at risk.
Gender- More males tend to develope hypertension than females.
Life Style- This plays a huge role in increasing or decreasing the chance of developement of high blood pressure in any indiviual. A person with a sedentay life style will be at greater risk than someone who is active. A person's diet also plays a large role. Someone whose diet contains a lot of salty or fried foods will be at much greater risk than somene whose diet does not.
Obesity- An obese person is at a higher risk for high blood pressure than someone who is not obese.
Smoker vs non-smoker- Someone who smokes reguarly generally has a higher chance of developing hyertension than someone who does not.
Stress- Though stress does temporarily raise blood pressure, it has yet to be proven to be a cause of hypertension.
Sleep apnea- A person with sleep apnea has a greater chance of having hypertension than a person who does not.
Alcohol- Alcohol consumption also has a big ole to play in high blood pressure. People who drink heavily and regularly are at a greater risk for devloping high blood pressure as well as other heart problems. Men can have up to 2 drinks per day and women only one. "One drink" is equivalent to a twelve ounce beer, one-and-a-half ounces of 80 proof alcohol, one ounce of 100 proof alcohol, or a four ounce glass of wine. Treatment & Prevention Prevention- Here are a few things that will help you to prevent development hypertension
Eating a healthy diet
Staying physically active
Avoid smoking/second-hand smoke
Avoid alcohol abuse
Treatment- Once you develop hypertension, there is no permanently getting rid of it, so you need to keep it under control.
One of the most important things to do, is to stay complient with all medications prescribed to you.
To help lower your blood pressure a few life style changes may be necessary. Like changing up your diet and becoming more physically active.
If you smoke, stop!
You should not abuse and in most cases even use alcohol while taking blood pressure medications.
Someone who has high blood pressure shoul also monitor their blood pressure daily to make sure there medication is working properly and also to be sure that their blood pressureis not above where it should be. Video: http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/More/ToolsForYourHeartHealth/Cardiovascular-Conditions-Video-Library_UCM_432751_SubHomePage.jsp
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