HYPERTENSION TREATMENT (HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE)
Treatment for hypertension depends on the stage of the condition and your specific background, lifestyle and medical history. Easy lifestyle changes may often be prescribed first, though you may need to take medication to supplement this. Your cardiologist will be able to develop a suitable treatment plan for you with your input.
More extensive treatment will be needed for more advanced hypertension, typically a combination of lifestyle and medication treatments. Treatments involving lifestyle changes will typically include:
- Healthy diet plans
- Avoiding risk factors like smoking, drinking alcohol and inactivity
- Regular, achievable physical activity
- Relaxation techniques like meditation and yoga
Medications you may be prescribed include:
- Diuretics which remove sodium and water from the body
- ACE inhibitors which relax the blood vessels
- ARBs which also relax the blood vessels
Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is a widespread condition affecting an estimated one in three people in the UK.
It can vary in severity and, if left untreated, can cause serious health complications. Hypertension means that your heart is working harder than it should to circulate blood, and the pressure of the blood against artery walls is too high.
What Is Hypertension?
Hypertension is a blood pressure reading of 140/90mmHg or higher. It is measured in millimetres of mercury (mmHg). The ideal reading for blood pressure is considered to be 90/60mmHg and 120/80mmHg. A reading of between 120/80mmHg and 140/90mmHg means that you are at risk of high blood pressure, and your doctor will recommend lifestyle changes and other ways to manage your blood pressure before it becomes dangerous.
What Causes High Blood Pressure?
Many factors can contribute to high blood pressure, and it may not always be obvious what the cause is. Factors that can increase your risk of developing high blood pressure include:
- Being overweight
- Diets that include too much salt
- Lack of exercise
- Caffeine or alcohol intake
- Being over 65
- Being of black African or Caribbean heritage
However, many risk factors can be resolved with simple lifestyle changes such as eating a healthy balanced diet or getting more exercise.
Known causes of hypertension include:
- Kidney disease
- Thyroid issues
- Medications such as hormonal birth control, steroids and SSRIs
Symptoms Of Hypertension
Identifying the symptoms of hypertension can be tricky, as many people with high blood pressure won’t experience noticeable signs of the condition. Some possible symptoms of high blood pressure include:
It is crucial that you get your blood pressure checked regularly, particularly if you have risk factors that could increase your chances of experiencing high blood pressure.
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Complications Of Hypertension
If you leave your hypertension untreated, the complications can be severe. The pressure on arteries from hypertension can cause serious damage to blood vessels and organs. Over time damage can build up and result in a serious health event like a heart attack or stroke, meaning the longer you experience hypertension without trying to manage it, the worse your outcome may be. Many complications arise from the hardening of the arteries caused by hypertension. Some possible complications include the following:
Here at Expert Cardiologist, we have a range of heart tests that can diagnose whether you have hypertension or not. Diagnosis is the first step towards being able to manage your heart health.
One of the best tests for diagnosing high blood pressure is a 24-hour blood pressure monitor, which is invaluable for diagnosing and managing high blood pressure. This monitor will track your blood pressure over 24 hours, during which you’ll be able to go about your typical daily tasks.
Your 24-hour blood pressure monitor will show two numbers. The systolic pressure measures the pressure when your heart pushes blood out. The diastolic pressure is the pressure when your heart is at rest between beats.
Being diagnosed with hypertension can be distressing, but it can be treated effectively with early and ongoing intervention. Your quality of life will not be significantly impacted, provided you take the proper steps to manage your high blood pressure and stick to the care plan you develop with your cardiologist.
Book An Appointment With Dr Georgios Karagiannis
Here at Expert Cardiologist, we will be with you every step of the way to help you manage and mitigate your hypertension. We pride ourselves on offering the highest level of care to help you live a full, healthy and happy life. Get in touch today to learn more about our heart tests and how we can help you manage your high blood pressure.
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