10 Things You Need To Know About Hypertension
Hypertension is commonly referred to the abnormal rise of a person’s blood pressure. This can be determined by a simple blood pressure examination. A BP (blood pressure) apparatus is a tool used to determine the person’s blood pressure reading. When one’s blood pressure is above the normal reading which is 120/80, he tends to be hypertensive. The BP reading usually comes in a paired number. 120 is the systolic pressure or the pressure exerted by the heart against the arteries when it is pumping blood. The number 80 is called the diastolic pressure or the pressure in the arteries when the heart is at rest. Above this normal blood pressure reading, the heart would be in constant pumping and pressure will be much higher. This can lead to cardiac arrest or stroke and a host of other health risks that may be avoided by knowing these 10 things about hypertension.
1. Hypertension is a very common disease.
Hypertension is very common especially in people of old age. However, even young adults have hypertension. Young adults can get hypertension at an early age of 25 years old. Out of 10 people, almost 3 are hypertensive. And this number will change as the population ages. By the time a person ages 50-60 years old, he will have a greater risk of becoming hypertensive. Age is one great risk factor that causes hypertension. As people grow old, their diastolic pressure normally increases as their arteries also grow old, weak and clogged.
2. Hypertension causes are also common and sometimes inevitable.
There are a lot of things that can cause hypertension. For instance, if you are overweight or obese, you have a 90% chance of getting hypertension. Your heart will have to work double in pumping blood throughout your body because of layers of fat that clog your arteries. Smoking and high-fat diets especially those high in sodium are also causing your blood pressure to spike. Uncontrolled alcohol consumption, stress and inactivity are also some of the causes of hypertension. To avoid getting the disease, avoid these hypertension causes too.
3. Hypertension is a silent, deadly killer.
Unlike many diseases with apparent symptoms, hypertension can just keep you clueless until it strikes. Hypertension symptoms may not be noticed at first and could even be mistaken for another disease. Unless you have your blood pressure checked, you wouldn’t know for sure if you are already suffering from hypertension until your BP reads above 120/90. Knowing that hypertension can hit without any warning, regularly have your BP checked to be sure. Some symptoms may only show when your BP spikes at 150/100 or higher. Headaches and dizziness may be felt. But you should not wait to feel these symptoms as one can already get a sudden heart attack under such condition. Knowing that hypertension can be a silent yet deadly killer, the best way to address it is through regular BP checkup and much caution.
4. Hypertension can affect both men and women.
That is in fact true. Hypertension is not gender biased; it affects both sexes. However, it could be age specific. It affects men more at a younger age (25 to 45) and gets back at women when they reach the age of 55 and above. Women however, can be at a higher risk compared to men when they have hormonal imbalances or are taking hormonal pills like the ones used for birth control.
5. Smoking increases your risk of getting hypertension.
We know that blood’s pressure against the arteries determine half your blood pressure reading. Any activity or condition that tightens or clogs the arteries will cause your blood pressure to spike. The same can be done by smoking. When you smoke, your arteries constrict and become smaller. This inhibits the natural flow of blood through them; hence, increasing your blood pressure. When you are at a high risk of developing hypertension, you might as well just quit smoking because you will have a 100% chance of getting it. With hypertension and smoking, you will have a very high risk or getting a heart attack.
6. There are hypertension risks that are just beyond your control.
While there are activities that you can halt to avoid hypertension, there are also risk factors that you could not control. For instance, if hypertension runs within your family, you will have a 60%-70% chance of getting it too. This risk will be much higher if your parents are both hypertensive. If such is the case, the best thing to do is to avoid any activity that may further cause hypertension. Regular blood pressure checkup is also advised.
7. Old people do not have to be hypertensive.
While it is a fact that hypertension can hit a large majority of the elderly population, not all people of ages 55 and above will suffer from hypertension or high blood pressure. There are a lot of exceptionally healthy, old people who still keep their blood pressure in check. Make them an inspiration and try to beat hypertension.
8. Hypertension is easy to treat.
Despite the gravity of the disease, it is still important to note that hypertension can easily be treated. There are a lot of hypertension medications that are available in the market; some can even be bought without any prescription. However, it is still highly advised that you check with the doctor before applying any hypertension treatment on yourself. Do not self-medicate. There are medications that can even increase your risk of getting high blood pressure. Avoiding salty and fatty foods, exercising regularly, drinking lots of water and fluid, avoiding smoking and alcohol, stress prevention and a healthy lifestyle are all simple things that you can do to keep hypertension at bay.
9. Hypertension can cause a host of other health risks.
Hypertension, when not treated immediately can cause major health risks like kidney failure, blood clotting in the arteries that will lead to sudden heart attack, artery damages, coronary disease, and brain damage or stroke. All these could be fatal. To avoid such from happening, regularly check your blood pressure and do intensive prevention measures.
10. Knowing all these ten things will save your life.
It was mentioned earlier that hypertension can easily be cured. It just depends on how you handle your condition. Do everything in your power to fight hypertension. Think that it is your life that is at stake. Aside from keeping a healthy lifestyle and diligently checking your blood pressure, knowing everything there is to know about hypertension will also help save your life. Keep yourself informed about hypertension!