Blood pressure is the force of blood pushing against blood vessel walls. The heart pumps blood into the arteries (blood vessels), which carry the blood throughout the body. High blood pressure, also called hypertension, is dangerous because it makes the heart work harder to pump blood to the body and it contributes to hardening of the arteries or atherosclerosis. Over time, high blood pressure can damage the arteries, heart, and kidneys and can lead to heart disease and stroke.
What is your normal Blood Pressure?
There are several catagories of Blood Pressure including:
- Normal: eqaul to or less than 120/80
- Prehypertension: 139/89 or higher
- Stage 1 Hypertension: 140-159/90-99
- Stage 2 Hpertension: 160 and above/100 and abo
* People whose blood pressure is above the normal range should consult their doctor about methods for lowering it.
What causes Hypertension?
The exact cause of hypertension is not known. Several factors and conditions may play a factor in its development, including:
- Lack of physical activity
- Too much salt in diet
- Too much alcohol consumption (no mor than 1 to 2 drinks per day)
What are the symptoms of hypertension?
There are usually no symptoms or signs of hypertension. In fact, nearly one-third of those who have it don’t know it. The only way to know definitely is to have your blood pressure checked.
If you blood pressure is extremely high, there may be certain symptoms to look out for, including:
- Severe headaches
- Fatigue or confusion
- Vision problems
- Chest pain
- Difficulty breathing
- Irregular heartbeat
- Blood in urine