Posted on Sep 17, 2020, 2 p.m.
What is Hypertension?
High blood pressure or hypertension is a general problem that, if not treated, can lead to several significant issues. When the blood pressure is high, arteries can get damaged as the force that blood applies to the arteries' walls is also high. The heart muscle widens and expands when it pumps blood against high blood pressure.
Why do we have Hypertension?
Hypertension happens with age and more than half of people above 60 years of age have it. Besides age, there are a few reasons that cause it to happen early. Blood pressure is controlled by many different organs, such as veins, arteries, heart, brain, and kidneys.
Hypertension is characterized as either primary or secondary. Most people have primary hypertension related to age and genetic factors. Some people may have a secondary that is caused by the following factors:
- OSA(Obstructive Sleep Apnea)
- Illegal Drugs
How is it diagnosed?
For its diagnosis, blood pressure is measured by placing a blood pressure cuff around the arm. The following are the ranges of normal and abnormal blood pressure. The top number(when the heart pumps) is called the "systolic blood pressure," and the bottom(when the heart relaxes) is called the "diastolic blood pressure."
- Normal: < 120/80
- Pre-hypertension: For systolic, between 120-139, and for diastolic, 80-89 diastolic. (120/80 to 139/89)
- If age is below 60 or presence of kidney disease or diabetes, > 140/90.
- If age is below and there is no kidney disease or diabetes present, > 150/90.
What are the symptoms?
Until any significant situation happens, such as a stroke or heart attack, hypertension does not cause symptoms. High blood pressure results in a headache, tiredness, head pounding, and blurry vision. Another sign of high blood pressure is when you hear the heartbeats in the ear, especially at night. Later on, symptoms of heart failure, stroke, irregular heartbeats, a heart attack can occur.
Medications for treating Hypertension
- Hydrochlorothiazide, chlorthalidone (Diuretics): are the safest and most effective medications to treat hypertension.
- Lisinopril, ramipril (ACE Inhibitors): block the kidney hormone production that raises blood pressure.
- Losartan, valsartan (ARBs): stop the receptor that the kidney hormones work to prevent the hormones from increasing the blood pressure.
- Amlodipine, diltiazem (Calcium Channel Blockers): relax the muscles in the arteries and veins' wall to decrease blood pressure levels.
- Metoprolol, atenolol (Beta-Blockers): block adrenaline in your system, which results in low blood pressure levels and slow heartbeats.
Article courtesy of: Anurag Vishwakarma, marketing manager at Wisdom Policy, Noida, Uttar Pradesh
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This article is not intended to provide medical diagnosis, advice, treatment, or endorsement.
Infographic by: - Wisdom Policy (A leading Insurance Provider in India)