Causes symptoms and treatment of high blood pressure

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Causes symptoms and treatment of high blood pressure
High blood pressure is also known as hypertension. Anyone whose blood pressure is 140/90mmhg or more for a sustained period is said to have high blood pressure.
Causes of high blood pressure
1) Age: The older you are the higher your risk of having high blood pressure.
2) Family history: If you have close family members with hypertension, your chances of developing it are significantly higher.
3) Overweight: Overweight refers to having extra body weight from muscle, bone, fat and/or water. Overweight people are more likely to develop high blood pressure, compared to people of normal weight.
4) Smoking: Smoking causes the blood vessels to narrow, resulting in higher blood pressure.
5) Alcohol intake: The risk may even sometimes include people who drink regularly, but not in excess.
6) High salt intake: Researchers from the University of Michigan Health System reported that societies where people don’t eat much salt have lower blood pressures than places where people eat a lot of salt.
7) Mental stress: Various studies have offered compelling evidence that mental stress, especially over the long term, can have a serious impact on blood pressure. Some levels of stress which are not managed properly can raise the risk of hypertension.
8) Diabetes: People with diabetes are at a higher risk of developing hypertension.
9) Pregnancy: Pregnant women have a higher risk of developing hypertension than women of the same age who are not pregnant.
Symptoms of high blood pressure typically include:
• Headache – usually, this will last for several days.
• Nausea – a sensation of unease and discomfort in the stomach with an urge to vomit.
• Vomiting – less common than just nausea.
• Dizziness – Lightheadedness, unsteadiness, and vertigo.
• Blurred or double vision (diplopia).
• Epistaxis – nosebleeds.
• Palpitations – disagreeable sensations of irregular and/or forceful beating of the heart.
• Dyspnea – breathlessness, shortness of breath.
Anybody who experiences these symptoms should see their doctor immediately.
Complications of high blood pressure
Below is a list of some of the possible complications of high blood pressure:
• Stroke – blood flow to the brain is impaired by blockage or rupture of an artery to the brain, and brain cells die.
• Heart attack – heart muscle dies due to a loss of blood supply.
• Heart failure – the heart struggles to pump enough blood to meet the needs of the whole body. This happens because after pumping blood against higher pressure into the blood vessels the heart muscle thickens.
• Kidney disease – hypertension often damages the small blood vessels in the kidneys, resulting in kidneys that do not work properly. Eventually the kidneys can fail completely (kidney failure).
• Eyes (hypertensive retinopathy) – untreated hypertension can lead to thickened, narrowed or torn blood vessels in the eyes, which can lead to vision loss.
Changes in lifestyle can help lower high blood pressure
The following are recommended lifestyle changes that can help you lower your blood pressure.
Regular exercise: Exercising for 30 to 60 minutes five days a week will usually lower a person’s blood pressure by 4 to 9 mmHg.
Reducing alcohol consumption: Alcohol consumption is a double-edged sword. Some studies indicate it helps lower blood pressure, while others report the opposite. In very small amounts it may lower blood pressure.
Eating healthily: This means eating plenty of fruits and vegetables, good quality unrefined carbohydrates, vegetable oils, and omega oils.
Lowering salt (sodium) intake: Studies have shown that even a moderate reduction in sodium intake can lower blood pressure levels by 2 to 8 mmHg.
Losing weight: Studies have revealed that even moderate weight loss – just ten pounds – can have a significant impact in lowering elevated blood pressure. If you are overweight, the nearer you get to your ideal weight the more your blood pressure is likely to fall.
Sleep: Not getting enough sleep can increase a person’s risk of developing high blood pressure.

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