High Blood Pressure (Hypertension), causes and treatments 

Hypertension is a silent condition that could go unnoticed for several years before showing any symptoms. 

We unknowingly experience hypertension from our daily activities; this could be from stress or extensive thinking. 

When our blood pressure is consistently high, the heart is at greater risk.

So What is hypertension?

Hypertension is the amount of blood passing through the blood vessels while the heart is pumping. 

When this is consistently high, It makes arteries tighter, restricting blood flow to your heart. 

This could lead to life-threatening diseases like a heart attack or stroke.

Diagnosis 

Hypertension can be diagnosed with a blood pressure monitor (BP). 

The monitor shows blood vessels’ pressure while it’s active and the pressure while it’s at rest.

BP reading while the heart is contracting is called systolic, while the reading when the heart is at rest is called diastolic. 

If both systolic and diastolic reading exceeds 140 mmHg – 90 mmHg, hypertension is diagnosed on two different days.

There are two types of hypertension. 

  1. Primary hypertension or essential hypertension
  2. Secondary hypertension 

Primary hypertension: is the most common type of hypertension.

If blood pressure is consistently high, above 140 mmHg – 90 mmHg without any identifiable secondary cause, it’s called primary hypertension or essential hypertension.

Treating primary hypertension. You can reduce the risk of having hypertension through Lifestyle changes Such as

  1. Having regular exercise 
  2. Through your diet
  3. Cutting back in alcohol, tobacco and caffeine intake 

What causes primary hypertension?

  1. Hereditary: Such as genetics abnormalities inherited 
  2. Environmental factors: Such as stress, substance abuse like alcohol, tobacco, and lack of exercise.

Secondary hypertension: mostly more severe than primary hypertension and is caused due to complications from another health issue such as diabetes, obesity, kidney disease.

Treating Secondary hypertension

Your doctor might want to address your underlying issue causing your hypertension. 

Some Medication for hypertension

  1. Diuretics – It helps in removing excess sodium from the body
  2. Calcium channel blockers – It’s widely used to treat hypertension. This group of medication relaxes the blood vessels.
  3. Beta-blockers – block the effect of adrenaline on the heart by making your heartbeat with less force and blocking certain hormones that could raise your blood pressure.

Diet that can lower your blood pressure

  • Cutting back from Foods that are high in saturated fats, sugary drinks, caffeine can help reduce your chances of developing hypertension.
  • Limiting the amount of alcohol intake helps in reducing your chances of developing hypertension..
  • Smoking – increases your risk of having a heart disease.
  • Salt – Cutting down to less than 4 grams of salt a day for people with hypertension helps lower blood pressure, as the substance in salt increases blood pressure. 
  • Adding potassium to your diet reduces blood pressure; fruits rich in potassium include; Oranges, Bananas, Spinach, and many others.
  • Garlic – has been proven to reduce your chances of developing hypertension..

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