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High Blood Pressure Symptoms and Treatment
High blood pressure is a common condition that can have deadly consequences. According to the American Heart Association, 103 million Americans adults have high blood pressure or hypertension. They also report that cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the United States.
The reason high blood pressure is often life-threatening is that it can go unnoticed up to the point when it starts to cause serious health complications. It is for this very reason that you should learn about high blood pressure, its symptoms and the different ways that doctors treat it.
How high blood pressure occurs
Hypertension happens when pumped blood exerts more force than is good for the arteries. The higher pressure could be caused by the arteries shrinking.
It could also happen when the heart starts to pump more blood than before. More blood flowing through the same vessels puts more pressure on the walls of the arteries. The sustained pressure gradually degrades the arteries.
Types of hypertension
High blood pressure is usually categorized into two types. The first type is primary or essential hypertension. Doctors are often unable to pinpoint an underlying cause or trigger for this type of high blood pressure. Primary hypertension usually develops gradually over many years.
The other type of high blood pressure is secondary hypertension. This type is caused by underlying problems like:
- Certain medications or illegal drugs
- Kidney problems
- Thyroid problems
- Overuse of salt
- Obstructive sleep apnea
- Excess body weight or obesity
If not caught in time, hypertension can cause complications like stroke, heart attack and heart failure. Because it degrades blood vessels, hypertension also causes impaired kidney function, impaired eyesight and in some cases, aneurysms.
Symptoms of hypertension
Hypertension is dubbed the silent killer for its ability to lay low until a large chunk of the damage is done. This means early-stage hypertension is best caught when a doctor checks their patient's blood pressure. For this reason, it is important to get regular wellness checks to monitor your blood pressure.
When high blood pressure becomes severe, you will notice:
- Painful, persistent headaches
- Vision problems
- Breathing problems
- An irregular heartbeat
- Chest pains
- Blood in your urine
These symptoms all tell you to see a doctor immediately. They are indicators that high blood pressure is affecting one or more of your vital organs.
If caught early, you can treat high blood pressure with lifestyle changes like exercise, weight loss, stress reduction or quitting alcohol, tobacco or drugs. Sometimes getting rid of high blood pressure is as simple as a change in medications.
Other times, lifestyle changes alone are not enough. A doctor may have to prescribe blood pressure medication. The type of medication a doctor prescribe will depend on your medical history and the severity of your blood pressure.
Keep an eye on your blood pressure to stay healthy
The best way to treat hypertension is to catch it early. If noticed in its early stages, it will only take a few small measures to get you back to full health. If your blood pressure is abnormally high and needs professional care, we are here to help. Our experienced doctors will offer customized treatment plans that will help reduce the risk of further complications.
Check out what others are saying about our services on Yelp: High Blood Pressure in Pembroke Pines, FL.
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