High Blood Pressure

What is Blood Pressure?

Blood pressure, the amount of force exerted by the blood against the arterial walls. It is expressed in millimetres of mercury (mm Hg). The arterial system, which branches from the heart, is responsible for delivering blood to the rest of the body. Your blood pressure naturally rises and falls during the day.

What do the blood pressure readings mean?

A person's blood pressure is indicated by two numbers:

The first value, the systolic blood pressure, represents the pressure your heart pumps through your arteries whenever it contracts.

The pressure inside your arteries while your heart is relaxing between beats is known as diastolic blood pressure. The number comes after the first one while measuring blood pressure.

If your blood pressure reading showed a systolic number of 120 and a diastolic number of 80, you would say "120 over 80" or"120/80 mmHg."

When someone says they have hypertension, what exactly do they mean?

Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is a medical condition where the blood pressure level is much higher than the average. Daily activities affect blood pressure and create fluctuations. High blood pressure is diagnosed when a patient's readings consistently show that their blood pressure is higher than what is considered normal.

Your health care team will be able to identify high blood pressure and make decisions about your therapy by analysing your systolic and diastolic blood pressure results and comparing them to the levels indicated guidelines.

What signs and symptoms of hypertension?

High blood pressure can cause symptoms such as headache, dizziness, blurry vision, chest pain, palpitations, and shortness of breath.

What causes hypertension, and what are its contributing factors?

Chronic high blood pressure usually manifests itself gradually. You can have high blood pressure if you are not getting enough exercise, consume excess salt, excess alcohol consumption, smoking, excess caffeine, stress, anxiety, and genetic causes. Medical conditions such as diabetes, high cholesterol, certain hormonal abnormalities, vascular disease, and kidney disease are also some of the contributing factors toward causing hypertension.

How do you prevent or lower your blood pressure?

People with high blood pressure can lower their levels down to an acceptable range with healthy lifestyle changes. Consult your healthcare provider for a consultation. Here are a few things you can do to keep your blood pressure under control.

  • Doing at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise per week (about 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week)
  • Abstaining from tobacco smoking
  • Eating a healthy diet low in sodium (salt)
  • Reduce caffeine intake
  • Reduce alcohol intake
  • Keeping your weight in check
  • Reducing symptoms of Anxiety
  • Getting 7-8 hours of sleep
  • Mindfulness

Reading up on the subject gives more insight into managing and avoiding hypertension.

It is important to note that some people with high blood pressure require medication and healthy lifestyle changes to successfully manage their condition.

Treating high blood pressure

Numerous considerations, such as the severity of hypertension and the patient's risk of developing cardiovascular disease or suffering a stroke, will be considered when deciding on a course of the treatment.

The first step towards lowering high blood pressure is lifestyle modification. This means developing healthy habits by avoiding all the potential unhealthy habits. Your doctor may recommend an exercise program, recommend dietary changes called DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) diet, advice on smoking cessation, cutting back on caffeine, getting enough sleep, meditation etc.

 Medication is offered when the high blood pressure is not controlled with Lifestyle Modification alone. Severity of hypertension and the presence of comorbid conditions like kidney disease, heart disease, high cholesterol, strokes may cause the options to change over time. It is also possible that some people will need a cocktail of medications to start feeling better. Your primary care physician may refer you to a specialist such as a kidney doctor, an endocrinologist, or a heart doctor for further management if more testing is needed.

Talk to your primary care physician if you have any symptoms mentioned above or if you would like to know more about the condition. You can call us at 321-384-3200 to make an appointment. We will be happy to help you. 

17 November 2022
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