High Blood Pressure - Key facts you should know

High blood pressure medically termed hypertension, affects billions of people around the world.

Here are some hypertension key facts: from the World Health Organisation:

  • An estimated 1.13 billion people worldwide have hypertension, most (two-thirds) living in low- and middle-income countries.

  • In 2015, 1 in 4 men and 1 in 5 women had hypertension.  

  • Fewer than 1 in 5 people with hypertension have the problem under control. 

  • Hypertension is a major cause of premature death worldwide.

What is Hypertension

Blood pressure is the force exerted by circulating blood against the walls of the body’s arteries, the major blood vessels in the body. Hypertension is when blood pressure is too high.

Blood pressure is written as two numbers. The first (systolic) number represents the pressure in blood vessels when the heart contracts or beats. The second (diastolic) number represents the pressure in the vessels when the heart rests between beats.

Hypertension is diagnosed if, when it is measured on two different days, the systolic blood pressure readings on both days is ≥140 mmHg and/or the diastolic blood pressure readings on both days is ≥90 mmHg.

What are common symptoms of hypertension?

The symptoms that appear with a significant elevation of blood pressure are headaches, fatigue, shortness of breath or a general feeling of being sick. If the blood pressure is not controlled, it can lead to different complications. The heart being the first to be involved in high blood pressure can be affected by heart attacks, angina pains, heart failure and even stroke. It is not only about the heart and vessels, but also, high blood pressure can lead to kidney dysfunction, memory decline and loss of vision. Starting from the body’s largest vessels to the tiniest ones, hypertension affects them all.

Living with Hypertension

It is always wise to check your blood pressure whenever possible. But, if you are above 40 years or if you are having a family member who suffers from high blood pressure, your blood pressure should be checked annually.

The optimum blood pressure is indicated as 120/80mmHg. But, the upper limit for blood pressure is 130/90mmHg after which the doctor will state the diagnosis as hypertension. In order to take an accurate reading, your blood pressure should be checked in a relaxed position and at least three readings should be taken on three different days and times and the average must be calculated as the final value. 

If you are already diagnosed with hypertension, it is important that you take your medications on time without missing them. They help in bringing down the blood pressure as well as in preventing complications. Anyhow, medications shouldn’t be the only way of regaining your good health. Lifestyle modifications are first on the list. Losing weight in overweight people has shown to reduce blood pressure in a significant way. Also relaxation techniques, stress relieving are very important in preventing hypertension.

High blood pressure is not a condition that can be ignored or treated for a while. It needs your attention and efforts for the rest of the life. Even if you are having a normal blood pressure, you must consider living a healthy life in order to prevent this silent and dangerous disease.

Hypertension management

Hypertension is not a condition that can be ignored. It needs proper attention and efforts for the rest of the life. Even if you are having a normal blood pressure, you must consider living a healthy life in order to prevent this silent and dangerous disease.

Prevention

    • Reducing salt intake (to less than 5g daily)
    • Eating more fruit and vegetables
    • Being physically active on a regular basis
    • Avoiding use of tobacco
    • Reducing alcohol consumption
    • Limiting the intake of foods high in saturated fats
    • Eliminating/reducing trans fats in diet


Management

    • Reducing and managing mental stress
    • Regularly checking blood pressure
    • Treating high blood pressure
    • Managing other medical conditions

Have your say

Leave us a comment!

guest
0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Our Instagram page

WhatsApp
Share
Email
Pin
Share
0
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
()
x
WhatsApp
Share
Email
Pin
Share