Your Piedmont Triad Blood Pressure Doctors
Your blood pressure is one of the vital signs that you should have checked out at a doctor’s on a regular basis. According to the American Heart Association, roughly 77.9 million Americans suffer from high blood pressure, which accounts for almost 33 percent of the country’s population. Diagnosing high blood pressure when you have it is important because it puts you at risk for a variety of health issues.
What Is High Blood Pressure?
Blood pressure is basically the force that’s exerted on the vessel walls by the blood that’s pushed through your arteries and veins. Normal blood pressure readings should lie between 90/60 and 120/80. The closer you are to 120/80, the more at risk you are of developing high blood pressure. The following are some of the other ranges and what they mean:
Blood pressure between 120/80 and 139/89 – Prehypertension.
Blood pressure between 140/90 and 159/99 – Stage 1 hypertension
Blood pressure between 160/100 and 179/110 – Stage 2 hypertension
Anything that reads over 179/110 is considered a hypertensive crisis and requires immediate medical attention. One of the issues of high blood pressure, in general, is that there’s rarely any symptoms as a result of having it. However, the higher your blood pressure is, the more at risk you are for heart disease, which can lead to strokes, heart attacks, heart failures and kidney failures.
The Causes of High Blood Pressure
There are a number of factors that can lead to high blood pressure, many of which are preventable. Some of the non-preventable risks of high blood pressure include gender, race, age, and genetics. For example, males are more likely to develop high blood pressure, as are individuals whose parents have high blood pressure. Some of the factors that cause high blood pressure that can be prevented include:
- Physical inactivity
- Excessive alcohol consumption
- A high-salt diet
Reducing High Blood Pressure
Although there’s nothing you can do about non-preventable factors, such as gender or age, there are a number of lifestyle changes that you can make to reduce your high blood pressure. Quitting smoking and reducing your alcohol consumption can have a huge effect. Maintaining a healthy weight by paying attention to your diet and exercising regularly will also help to reduce your blood pressure.
High blood pressure can put you at serious risk for heart-related issues. According to the CDC, over 360,000 Americans died in 2013 as a direct or indirect result of high blood pressure. If you have high blood pressure, it’s important that your properly diagnosed so that you can begin taking precautions and making smarter lifestyle changes to reduce your blood pressure, thereby reducing your risk of heart disease.