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Hypertension

What is HyperTension

High blood pressure, or hypertension, occurs when your blood pressure increases to unhealthy levels. Your blood pressure measurement takes into account how much blood is passing through your blood vessels and the amount of resistance the blood meets while the heart is pumping.

Narrow arteries increase resistance. The narrower your arteries are, the higher your blood pressure will be. Over the long term, increased pressure can cause health issues, including heart disease.

Hypertension is quite common. In fact, since the guidelines have recently changed, it’s expected that nearly half of American adults will now be diagnosed with this condition.

Hypertension typically develops over the course of several years. Usually, you don’t notice any symptoms. But even without symptoms, high blood pressure can cause damage to your blood vessels and organs, especially the brain, heart, eyes, and kidneys.

Early detection is important. Regular blood pressure readings can help you and your doctor notice any changes. If your blood pressure is elevated, your doctor may have you check your blood pressure over a few weeks to see if the number stays elevated or falls back to normal levels.

Treatment for hypertension includes both prescription medication and healthy lifestyle changes. If the condition isn’t treated, it could lead to health issues, including heart attack and stroke.

What are the symptoms of HyperTension?

Hypertension is generally a silent condition. Many people won’t experience any symptoms. It may take years or even decades for the condition to reach levels severe enough that symptoms become obvious. Even then, these symptoms may be attributed to other issues.

Symptoms of severe hypertension can include:

  • headaches
  • shortness of breath
  • nosebleeds
  • flushing
  • dizziness
  • chest pain
  • chest pain
  • visual changes
  • blood in the urine

These symptoms require immediate medical attention. They don’t occur in everyone with hypertension, but waiting for a symptom of this condition to appear could be fatal.

The best way to know if you have hypertension is to get regular blood pressure readings. Most doctors’ offices take a blood pressure reading at every appointment.

What causes high blood pressure?

There are two types of hypertension. Each type has a different cause.

Primary hypertension

Primary hypertension is also called essential hypertension. This kind of hypertension develops over time with no identifiable cause. Most people have this type of high blood pressure.

Researchers are still unclear what mechanisms cause blood pressure to slowly increase. A combination of factors may play a role. These factors include:

  • Genes: Some people are genetically predisposed to hypertension. This may be from gene mutations or genetic abnormalities inherited from your parents.
  • Physical changes: If something in your body changes, you may begin experiencing issues throughout your body. High blood pressure may be one of those issues. For example, it’s thought that changes in your kidney function due to aging may upset the body’s natural balance of salts and fluid. This change may cause your body’s blood pressure to increase.
  • Environment: Over time, unhealthy lifestyle choices like lack of physical activity and poor diet can take their toll on your body. Lifestyle choices can lead to weight problems. Being overweight or obese can increase your risk for hypertension.

Secondary hypertension

Secondary hypertension often occurs quickly and can become more severe than primary hypertension. Several conditions that may cause secondary hypertension include:

  • Kidney Disease
  • Obstructive sleep apnea
  • congental heart defects
  • problems with your thyroid
  • side effects of medication
  • use of illegal drugs
  • alcohol abuse or chronic use
  • Adrenal gland Problems
  • certain endocrine tumors

Home remedies for high blood pressure

Healthy lifestyle changes can help you control the factors that cause hypertension. Here are some of the most common home remedies.

Developing a healthy diet

A heart-healthy diet is vital for helping to reduce high blood pressure. It’s also important for managing hypertension that is under control and reducing the risk of complications. These complications include heart disease, stroke, and heart attack.

A heart-healthy diet emphasizes foods that include:

  • fruits
  • vegetables
  • whole grains
  • lean proteins like fish

Increasing physical activity

Reaching a healthy weight should include being more physically active. In addition to helping you shed pounds, exercise can help reduce stress, lower blood pressure naturally, and strengthen your cardiovascular system.

Aim to get 150 minutes of moderate physical activity each week. That’s about 30 minutes five times per week.

Reaching a healthy weight

If you are overweight or obese, losing weight through a heart-healthy diet and increased physical activity can help lower your blood pressure.

Managing stress

Exercise is a great way to manage stress. Other activities can also be helpful. These include:

  • meditation
  • deep breathing
  • muscle relaxation
  • massage
  • yoga or tai chi

These are all proven stress-reducing techniques. Getting adequate sleep can also help reduce stress levels.

Adopting a cleaner lifestyle

If you’re a smoker, try to quit. The chemicals in tobacco smoke damage the body’s tissues and harden blood vessel walls.

If you regularly consume too much alcohol or have an alcohol dependency, seek help to reduce the amount you drink or stop altogether. Alcohol can raise blood pressure.

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