Hypertension, the medical term for high blood pressure, is also referred to as the silent killer. Its nickname is appropriate since hypertension usually presents without any symptoms but is a major cardiovascular risk factor and causes many deaths worldwide.
Normal blood pressure is under 120 mmHg systolic and 80 mmHg diastolic, or below 120/80 mmHg. Hypertension is above 130/90 mmHg.
Blood pressure refers to the pressure the blood exerts against the walls of the arteries. The higher number (systolic blood pressure) refers to the pressure against the artery walls during the heart contractions when blood is actively pumped. The lower number (diastolic blood pressure) refers to the pressure against the artery walls between heart contractions when the heart is relaxed.
It is usual for your blood pressure to change during the day. It is dependent on your physical activity and stress levels. Your systolic blood pressure, especially, is reliant on momentary circumstances. For example, when your heart rate increases, your systolic blood pressure should also rise. Your diastolic blood pressure should be more constant.
When your resting blood pressure is constantly elevated, it can mean several things. It can be due to unhealthy arteries, but it can also cause damage to your arteries. Regardless of the origin of hypertension, it withholds significant cardiovascular risk, increasing your likelihood of suffering from a stroke, heart attack, or kidney disease.
The cause of hypertension cannot always be determined. However, it is very strongly linked to an unhealthy lifestyle, an unhealthy diet, and being physically inactive. Smoking also significantly increases your risk for hypertension. Also, if you are stressed, obese, or diabetic, you are much more likely to have high blood pressure.
Additional to your lifestyle and environmental factors, your genes and ancestry play a considerable role in how likely you are to develop high blood pressure. If you are genetically predisposed, you will need to take extra care to make sure you keep yourself healthy if you want to prevent yourself from developing hypertension.
Although your genes can significantly affect your risk, no one is exempt from developing high blood pressure. A healthy lifestyle is essential for all of us to avoid disease. However, with a genetic predisposition, regularly monitoring your blood pressure is crucial, even if you seem healthy otherwise.
Regular blood pressure measurements are imperative for individuals with a genetic predisposition or health problems. Blood pressure cannot be detected other than by measuring it. Fortunately, getting it measured at your doctor or nearest pharmacy is quick, easy, and cost-effective.
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