Shortness of breath
Blood or blood spots in eyes
Heart Attack or Stroke
Systolic Pressure: The pressure of the blood when your heart beats to pump blood out.
Diastolic Pressure: The pressure of the blood when your heart rests in between beats.
Time of day: Readings are higher during daytime, and lower during sleep.
Activity: Readings are higher when a person is exercising or active, and lower during body rest.
Moods: Readings are higher when a person is happier, excited, afraid or upset.
Stress or pressure: Readings are higher when a person is stressed or under some kind of pressure.
Illness: Readings may be higher when a person is ill or has a disease or infection.
Primary (Essential) Hypertension: This accounts for almost 90% of all hypertension cases. It tends to develop slowly and begins to manifest during old age. It may also result from genetic, behavioral, physical and environmental factors. Primary hypertension is not common in children or teenagers. This Hypertension type shows no identifiable symptoms.
Shortness of breath
Blood in urine (Hematuria)
Secondary Hypertension: This type does not occur very often, even though they are known to have identifiable causes. They are caused usually by peoples' reaction to some medication or some medical conditions. Kids with hypertension tend to have this type.
Narrowing of the main artery that takes blood from the heart to the rest of the body
Kidney problems (Renovascular Hypertension)
Adrenal gland tumors
Resistant Hypertension: This is a form of high blood pressure which fails to respond to treatment and is thus named ‘resistant hypertension’. This occurs in spite of the many forms of treatment available. Resistant hypertension can also occur in people with adrenal gland problems and fluid retention as a side effect of kidney failure. These are both forms of secondary high blood pressure.
Most people with resistant hypertension can be successfully treated with multiple drugs or with the identification of a secondary cause.
Malignant Hypertension: A rare but potentially fatal form of high blood pressure where blood pressure rises rather quickly. This very high level of pressure causes bleeding in the retinas in both eyes but can also affect any organs in the body like the kidneys. Typically it affects certain groups of people more than others such as those of African descent, those with kidney failure and pregnant women who have developed complications like pregnancy toxaemia. Younger people are more likely to be affected than older people which is contrary to the normal risk factors for high blood pressure.
The problem with this form is that the symptoms can be very similar to other medical conditions and also the symptoms are usually related to which organ of the body has been affected.
But some common symptoms include:
Numbness in arms and legs
Isolated Diastolic Hypertension: High blood pressure does not always mean high systolic and diastolic pressure. Sometimes only the diastolic pressure is very high while the systolic pressure is normal. When this happens we call it Isolated diastolic hypertension.
Isolated Systolic Hypertension: When the systolic pressure is high and the diastolic pressure is normal, we call this Isolated systolic hypertension.
Body Weight: Being overweight puts a lot of stress on your heart and blood vessels. The heart is forced to work harder than it should. Additionally, fatty deposits, debris and cholesterol in the blood vessels cause the vessels to narrow.
Diet: Salt makes food very tasty but also causes high blood pressure. Fatty foods also cause the body to build body fat, which can lead to high blood pressure.
Caffeine: This is a stimulant usually found in energy drinks, tea and coffee. More than 4 cups of coffee or tea per day can gradually build up your blood pressure.
Smoking: Research says that smoking causes a narrowing of the blood vessels and can increase your chances of getting High Blood Pressure, Stroke or Heart Attack.
Alcohol: More than 3 units of alcohol per day gradually develop high blood pressure. Alcohol also has a lot of calories and continual drinking makes you gain extra weight, which is a risk factor.
Exercise: Regular exercise is key in keeping a healthy blood pressure level. This is because exercises keep your cardio-vascular system (heart and the blood vessels) working smoothly and in good condition. Working out regularly, like cycling, running, jogging, walking, playing various sports also keeps your weight in check and that helps keep the blood pressure in control.
Angiotensin Converting Enzyme (ACE) Inhibitors
Angiotensin Receptor Blockers
Calcium Channel Blockers
Fiber rich foods
Fruits and vegetables
Omega oil and Olive oil
Avoid (or at least reduce):
Energy drinks, Cold drinks
Smoking and Alcohol
Lose body weight
Take early and enough sleep
Do Walking or Jogging or Running
Playing various sports
In all the above, you will notice that taking care of your health and blood pressure is all about lifestyles. As a young person, it is very easy to think that it is ok to eat and drink anything. What you eat now will determine how your health will be in future. So make the right choices now.
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