What is hypertension?
Hypertension, also known as high blood pressure, is a common medical condition in which the arteries consistently push blood through the body with a particularly strong force, putting too much pressure on the walls of the blood vessels. Hypertension is incredibly common, with researchers estimating that as many as 1/3 of all Americans have it.
What Causes Hypertension?
In the vast majority of cases, the exact cause of the hypertension is unknown. Several risk factors are known to increase your odds of developing the condition, however. These risk factors include drinking too much alcohol, consuming too much salt, smoking and being overweight. Stress, vitamin and mineral deficiencies, aging, various medicines and genetics are all thought to play a role as well.
What are the Symptoms of Hypertension?
Unfortunately, people who have hypertension often experience no symptoms, making the condition more difficult to catch and treat. Symptoms including headaches, dizziness and nosebleeds may occur, but generally do not unless the condition has reached a serious level.
Because hypertension often produces no symptoms, it is important for anyone with risk factors or a family history of hypertension to see their doctor at ProMed Clinics regularly. Doctors can easily catch hypertension by taking your blood pressure, but they can only do this is you come in.
Is Hypertension Dangerous?
While hypertension may not cause any bothersome symptoms, this does not mean it should be ignored. Hypertension can quickly become very serious and even life-threatening if not properly managed and controlled. Hypertension has been known to cause health problems including heart attacks, strokes, aneurysms, kidney failure and vision loss.
How is Hypertension Treated?
If you are diagnosed with hypertension, your doctor at ProMed Clinics will want you to make certain lifestyle changes right away. For example, you may need to eat better, begin exercising regularly, achieve a healthier weight or stop smoking. Many cases of hypertension can be treated or even cured through lifestyle changes alone.
If lifestyle changes aren't enough to get your hypertension under control, you refuse to make them or your doctor simply wants to bring your blood pressure down more quickly, he or she may also prescribe a medication as well.
Hypertension is a serious medical condition, but it is treatable. If you have any of the risk factors for hypertension, visit your doctor at ProMed Clinics to have your blood pressure tested as part of a routine exam. I doesn't hurt anything and it just may save your life.
If you think you have hypertension, schedule an appointment at our Frederiksted, St. Croix office today to learn more how we can help you prevent future complications