High blood pressure (HBP) is a serious condition that can lead to coronary heart disease, heart failure, stroke, kidney failure, and other health problems.
“Blood pressure” is the force of blood pushing against the walls of the arteries as the heart pumps blood. If this pressure rises and stays high over time, it can damage the body in many ways.
About 1 in 3 adults in the US has HBP. The condition itself usually has no signs or symptoms. You can have it for years and not know it.
*Normal blood pressure = 120/80
*High Blood Pressure
—>Stage 1= 140-159/90-99
—>Stage 2= 160 or higher/100 or higher
*These numbers apply to most adults ages 18 and older
Blood pressure doesn’t stay the same all the time. It lowers as you sleep and rises when you wake up. Blood pressure also rises when you’re excited, nervous, or active. If your numbers stay above normal most of the time, you’re at risk for health problems. The risk grows as blood pressure numbers rise. “Prehypertension” means you may end up with HBP, unless you take steps to prevent it.
If you’re being treated for HBP and have repeat readings in the normal range, your blood pressure is under control. However, you still have the condition. You should see your doctor and follow your treatment plan to keep your blood pressure under control.
Blood pressure tends to rise with age. Following a healthy lifestyle helps some people delay or prevent this rise in blood pressure.
Tips to maintain a healthy blood pressure:
-Eat a healthy diet
-Reduce sodium in your diet
-Limit the amount of alcohol you drink
-Avoid tobacco products and secondhand smoke
-Cut back on caffeine
-Reduce your stress
-Monitor your BP at home and make regular doctor’s appointments
-Get support from family and friends