What is High blood pressure?

January 13, 2020

The blood in our bodies flows from the heart to the various organs. As the blood flows, the blood vessels press. The condition where this pressure is higher than usual is called "high blood pressure" or "hypertension". With a simple measuring device, you can measure your blood pressure. The measurement gives two numbers: systolic value (high) and diastolic value (low). If the values obtained are greater than 140/90, means that the subject suffers from high blood pressure.

What causes high blood pressure?

In most cases (95%) one can not point to a clear cause of high blood pressure. These cases are referred to as "primary hypertension".

Only 5% of cases can be attributed to high blood pressure as a clear cause of illness or medication. These cases are called "secondary hypertension".

How to check high blood pressure

What are the symptoms?

There are usually no symptoms of high blood pressure, and those with high blood pressure do not feel anything. However, it is a major cause of many dangerous diseases - hence the so-called "silent killer". Only if blood pressure is particularly high it can cause symptoms such as headache, vision changes, chest pain and shortness of breath.

Could there be complications?

Definitely. High blood pressure is a risk factor for many diseases, so it is very important to treat it. Increased blood pressure for many years (if left untreated) can cause, among other things, heart attacks, myocardial infarction, brain events, kidney damage, and eye damage. It is therefore very important to prevent hypertension, and in case of hypertension-treat it and be monitored for medical attention.

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention in the United States (CDC):


- About 7 in 10 people with their first heart attack suffer from high blood pressure.

- About 8 in 10 people with their first stroke suffer from high blood pressure.

- About 7 in 10 people with chronic heart failure have high blood pressure.

 

What are the risk factors for high blood pressure?

1. Age-The risk of developing high blood pressure increases as we get older
2. Fat or obesity
3. Smoking
4. sedentary lifestyle, low physical activity
5. Nutrition that includes too much salt
6. Excessive alcohol consumption
7. Pressure
8. Family history of high blood pressure

 
How to diagnose hypertension?

Since in most cases you do not feel the increased blood pressure, you need to measure it to find out if you suffer from it. Blood pressure can be measured with a simple device when visiting a family doctor.

About 10% of the population suffers from "white coat syndrome," meaning that they only have high blood pressure when examined in a medical setting or in the presence of a physician, while their blood pressure is normal throughout the day. If the diagnosis of high blood pressure is uncertain, a blood pressure Holter test can be performed-using a 24-hour blood pressure measuring device. The device is turned on once every 30 minutes throughout the day and records the blood pressure values ​​measured. The test is simple and allows to reliably diagnose or rule out high blood pressure.

If high blood pressure is first diagnosed under 30 or over 50, further clarification is needed to rule out secondary hypertension -causes that are often reversible.


How do I fare in comparrison to others?

It is estimated that about 20% (1 in 5) suffer from high blood pressure, but most are unaware.

According to the World Health Organization, high blood pressure is a condition that causes about half of all deaths from stroke and heart disease. Hypertension complications are responsible for 9.4 million deaths worldwide each year.

 

hypertension levels and treatments

what are the treatments?

High blood pressure can be affected in several ways:

  • Weight loss-if necessary. Alternatively: maintaining proper body weight and obesity prevention
  • Diet- a diet rich in fruits and vegetables and low in fat.
  • Moderate salt intake-Adults are recommended to consume no more than 6 grams of salt a day (containing 2.4 grams of sodium-which is the salt-damaging substance).
  • Exercise-aerobic exercise for 30 minutes a day, at least four times a week.
  • Quit Smoking.
  • Moderate alcohol consumption-at the most one alcoholic drink per day. (beer, wine, vodka etc…)
  • Hypertension drug treatment-which the family doctor adjusts if needed. Sometimes a combination of medicines is needed to balance blood pressure optimally. If blood pressure is not balanced with combined drug therapy or is out of balance after a period of imbalance, other reasons for hypertension should be ruled out, such as the use of NSAIDs-such as Nurofen, Arcoxia, Waltran and Atopane-or sleep apnea( Can be diagnosed in a sleep lab).

Is this condition for a lifetime?

In most cases, high blood pressure begins between the ages of 30 to 50 and lasts a lifetime. In the vast majority of cases, it begins gradually. It causes accumulated damage over the years, and therefore it is very important for early detection, tracking, and treatment.


What are the warning signs that require immediate medical attention?

In most cases, there are no warning signs of high blood pressure, so it is important to measure your blood pressure once every few years. People who are at risk of developing high blood pressure (who have family members who are hypertensive or are of the age that usually develops high blood pressure) should measure blood pressure more frequently. Blood pressure can be always measured by Your family doctor. You can also consult with him about how often this test should be done.

If very high blood pressure values ​​(over 180 systolic and over 110 diastolic) are measured by repeated measurements, and if these values ​​are accompanied by one of the following symptoms - shortness of breath, chest pain, intense headache, blurred vision or nasal bleeding - urgent medical examination should be made.

How do you learn to live with hypertension?

Those who suffer from high blood pressure should pay particular attention to a healthy lifestyle: maintain a normal weight, regular exercise, maintain a balanced diet, low salt, and fats, and do not overdo alcohol. In addition, they must address the additional risk factors that-along with high blood pressure-may accelerate the development of cardiovascular diseases such as smoking, diabetes, and high cholesterol.

It is also worthwhile to have an orderly medical check-up:try to see your family doctor from time to time for blood pressure measurements and periodic general physical exams. At least bi-anual examinations are needed to detect possible complications due to prolonged and mostly unbalanced high blood pressure, such as blood tests for kidney function, eye tests and echo.

If your physician recommends drug treatment -it should be adhered to according to your doctors instructions and You should inform your physician immediately if the treatment is discontinued.

 

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