Also referred to as high blood pressure, it is a medical condition that increases the patient’s risk of having serious heart problems such as stroke and heart attack. A person can have hypertension for a long period of time without exhibiting symptoms. Eventually, almost everyone will be affected by hypertension because high blood pressure becomes common as a person ages.
Signs and Symptoms
High blood pressure does not usually show signs and symptoms. Common symptoms such as dizzy spells, headaches and nosebleeds usually occur when hypertension has reached advance stages. To determine the stability of your blood pressure, you can ask your doctor for a monitored reading starting from age 20. If your doctor detects any sign of risk for hypertension or cardiovascular disease, he will most likely recommend more frequent screenings.
There are two kinds of high blood pressure. The primary hypertension has a 90 to 95 percent occurrence among adults and tends to develop as people age. Secondary hypertension is caused by an underlying condition, and usually manifests itself suddenly rather than gradually. Some of the medications and conditions that can result to secondary hypertension include:
- Abnormalities in the kidney
- Tumors in the adrenal gland
- Taking of certain medications such as pain relievers, decongestants, birth control pills and cold remedies
- Taking of illegal drugs such as amphetamines and cocaine
Hypertension has numerous risk factors, some of which are uncontrollable. These include:
- Family history
- Weight and obesity
- Lack of physical activity
- Lack of vitamin D
- Lack of potassium
- Excessive alcohol consumption
Damage to the blood vessels and other organs in the body is the primary result of uncontrolled high blood pressure. Other complications include:
- Heart failure
- Blockage or rupturing of the blood vessel in the brain, which can lead to a stroke
- Thickening, narrowing and tearing of blood vessels in the eyes
- Metabolic syndrome
There are several kinds of medications used to control blood pressure.
- Thiazide diuretics
- Renin inhibitors
- Beta blockers
- Angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors
Before taking any medication for high blood pressure, it’s imperative that you consult your doctor first. Taking the wrong kind of medication can make your hypertension worse.
Living a healthy lifestyle can lessen the risks of having hypertension. A healthy diet that includes the right kind of vitamins and minerals is a must. Limited alcohol intake and not smoking will definitely do wonders for the heart. Stress should be managed effectively for this can trigger high blood pressure.