High blood pressure, also known as hypertension, is a build of high pressure/tension in the arteries. These arteries are vessels that carry blood from the heart to the rest of the body. Blood pressure readings are measured in systolic blood pressure and diastolic pressure.
Systolic pressure is the top number and equals the pressure in the arteries as the heart contracts, whereas the diastolic pressure is the bottom number and measures the pressure in the arteries as the heart relaxes.
What Is Normal Blood Pressure? A healthy blood pressure is usually below 120/80. When blood pressure is anywhere between 120/80 and 139/89 it is referred to as pre-hypertension. It’s important to have a normal blood pressure, as it can cause health complications that can impact on your life.
What Is Low Blood Pressure? When a blood pressure reading has a systolic pressure of about 90 to 100 it is considered low blood pressure. Whereas when a reading is 140/90 or higher it is classed as high blood pressure.
Complications of high blood pressure can lead to conditions such as heart disease, kidney disease, hardening of the arteries, damage to the eyes and even a stroke. These can lead to permanent damage in the form of atherosclerosis, arteriosclerosis and brain damage.
Many people suffer from hypertension due to the lifestyle they live. Some of the most common causes of high blood pressure are:
Blood pressure is measured using a sphygmomanometer. This contains an air pump and a pressure gauge, that measure the pressure units in the blood; these are called millimetres of mercury. A general practitioner will place the cuff around the upper arm and inflate the air pump to a pressure that will stop the flow of the blood.
When it deflates the practitioner will listen to the pulsation of the arteries and this is the recorded systolic pressure. The cuff will continue to decrease and the pressure at which the pulsation stops is recorded as the diastolic pressure. These will then be combined to give you your overall blood pressure, which means your measure can be compared with the blood pressure range.
When you suffer from hypertension, it’s likely you’ll experience some of the signs and symptoms of high blood pressure such as:
These are just a few of the most common signs of high blood pressure. Should you experience one or a number of them, then it’s important to go and have your blood pressure taken.
Hypertension is commonly known as a silent killer as it can lead to multiple health complications that can be life threatening. High blood pressure can quietly damage a number of different parts in your body. Some of the effects it can have are:
High blood pressure in pregnancy, isn’t something to be necessarily worried about and there are many different types of hypertension a pregnant woman can suffer from. Such as:
Most women who are pregnant are likely to suffer from high blood pressure. Doctors or nurses will regularly carry out blood pressure checks during your pregnancy.
Hypertension is usually easy to treat and is most commonly done through high blood pressure medication. Using high blood pressure tablets and lifestyle changes can help you learn how to control high blood pressure. Some of the most common hypertension medication to be prescribed is:
In addition to using hypertension tablets, there a number of lifestyle changes that can be used to help prevent and lower blood pressure. Carrying out the following can be successful in lowering blood pressure:
If you’re worried you might be suffering from hypertension, then it’s important to visit your local healthcare facility to get your blood pressure checked. Here at Broadgate GP, we offer hypertension appointments.
Any readings that are higher than 140 systolic or 90 diastolic are considered high.
When you’re stressed your body produces a surge in hormones, these hormones temporarily increase your blood pressure. Whilst stress can cause sporadic high blood pressure, there’s no evidence to prove that stress can cause long-term high blood pressure.
Ideal blood pressure should be more than 120 over 80 and less than 140 over 90. If your reading is only slightly over then slight lifestyle changes can bring it down.
If you have high blood pressure, then this puts a strain on your heart and blood vessels. Overtime this can lead to serious things such as a heart attack or stroke. Hypertension is also know to cause heart and kidney disease and has been linked to dementia.