High Blood Pressure
High blood pressure is a very common health condition, affecting more than half of American adults.
High blood pressure is often referred to as the “silent killer,” and is a leading cause of heart attack and stroke in North America. In fact, it is one of the most common preventable causes of heart disease – which remains the number one cause of death for Americans – second only to smoking.
Medical professionals have advised individuals to check their blood pressure often, as part of routine preventative health care, and to track the results. The “high range” for blood pressure was traditionally 140/90 and a cause for concern worth visiting a doctor to discuss. However, recent revisions to the guidelines made by the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology have resulted in a lower threshold in what is considered “high.”
High blood pressure will [now] be defined as 130/80, a change that will affect tens of millions of Americans who will now meet the criteria for the condition, and will need to change their lifestyles or take medicines to treat it.
If you have high blood pressure, your heart is working extra hard to pump blood throughout your body, which can cause your arteries to become less elastic and scarred. Over time, untreated high blood pressure can cause your arteries to stiffen, and your heart to become stiffer and weaker, resulting in a possible heart attack, kidney failure or stroke.
High blood pressure is especially dangerous because many people do not experience known symptoms. The “silent killer” can be wreaking havoc on your body without you knowing anything’s wrong. The American Heart Association reports that people often believe the myth that high blood pressure will display symptoms such as “nervousness, sweating, difficulty sleeping or facial flushing.” This is simply not true.
According to the American Heart Association, “if you ignore your blood pressure because you think a certain symptom or sign will alert you to the problem, you are taking a dangerous chance with your life.”
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John D. Miller is the founder/owner of Home Care Partners, LLC, a Massachusetts business providing private duty, personalized in-home assistance and companion care services to those needing help in daily activities and household functions.
Phone: (781) 378-2164