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57 Hypertension-an-overview

Hypertension - an overview

Hypertension - an overview

High Blood Pressure

 

Overview

Hypertension is the term doctor’s use for high blood pressure.

Blood pressure readings are measured in millimeters of mercury (mmHg) and usually given as 2 numbers. For example, 140 over 90 (written as 140/90).

* The top number is your systolic pressure, the pressure created when your heart beats. It is considered high if it is consistently over 140.

* The bottom number is your diastolic pressure, the pressure inside blood vessels when the heart is at rest. It is considered high if it is consistently over 90.

Either or both of these numbers may be too high.

Pre-hypertension is when your systolic blood pressure is between 120 and 139 or your diastolic blood pressure is between 80 and 89 on multiple readings. If you have pre-hypertension, you are more likely to develop high blood pressure at some point

Blood pressure measurements are the result of the force of the blood produced by the heart and the size and condition of the arteries.

Symptoms

Most of the time, there are no symptoms. Symptoms that may occur include:

  • Confusion
  • Chest pain
  • Ear noise or buzzing
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Nose bleed
  • Tiredness
  • Vision changes

If you have a severe headache or any of the symptoms above, see your doctor right away. This may be a sign of a complication or dangerously high blood pressure called malignant hypertension.

Causes

  • Most commonly it is due to high salt diet.
  • Lack of exercise
  • High level of stress
  • Smoking and excessive alcohol consumption

Secondary Hypertension

High blood pressure can affect all types of people. You have a higher risk of high blood pressure if you have a family history of the disease. Most of the time, no cause is identified. This is called essential hypertension. High blood pressure that results from a specific condition, habit, or medication is called secondary hypertension.

Secondary hypertension may also be due to

  • Anxiety and stress
  • Excessive Alcohol Use
  • Over consumption of fried food
  • Appetite suppressants
  • Arteriosclerosis
  • Birth control pills
  • Certain cold medicines
  • Cocaine use
  • Diabetes
  • Kidney disease
  • Migraine medicines
  • Obesity
  • Pain
  • Pregnancy (called gestational hypertension)

Symptoms of secondary hypertension 

Most of the time, there are no symptoms. Symptoms that may occur include:

  • Regular Headaches
  • Feeling of heaviness oh head
  • Vision Problems
  • Confusion
  • Ear noise or buzzing
  • Nosebleed
  • Tiredness
  • Vision changes

What should you do if you are having Hypertension?

  • Quit Smoking
  • Do not consume alcohol excessively
  • Lead a healthy lifestyle
  • Eat a low salt balanced diet
  • Practice meditation and other relaxation techniques
  • Follow the advice of your doctor, dietician and fitness expert
  • Monitor your blood pressure regularly
  • Take your medications regularly and as prescribed

Red Flags

  • Severe headaches
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Shaking and rigors
  • Fainting spells

If you encounter any of these symptoms you should consult your doctor without any delay.

 

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