Today most of the people suffer from hypertension due to job stress and other household problems. In hypertension, patient's blood pressure is high and when it is at alarming stage, it causes major harm. Blood pressure is explained as the force of blood pushing against the walls of arteries as it flows through them.
As blood flows through arteries it exerts pressure inside of the artery walls. The more pressure the blood exerts on the artery walls, the higher the blood pressure will be. The size of small arteries also affects the blood pressure. When the muscular walls of arteries are relaxed, or dilated, the pressure of the blood flowing through them is lower than when the artery walls narrow, or constrict. Blood pressure is at peak when the heart beats push blood out into the arteries.
When the heart relaxes to fill with blood again, the pressure is at its lowest point. When doctors measure blood pressure, the systolic pressure is stated first and the diastolic pressure second. Blood pressure is measured in millimeters of mercury (mm Hg). If systolic pressure of person is 120 and diastolic pressure is 80, it is mentioned as 120/80 mm Hg. A normal range of blood pressure is lowered to less than 120 over less than 80. All people have to understand the concept of blood pressure and take effective steps to keep within range in order to maintain good health and avoid life threatening disease.
Hypertension is a critical health trouble because it does not normally exhibit any symptoms. Many people suffer from hypertension without knowing it. Research report indicates that male community is more prone to hypertension than women and it is more common in people over the age of 65 than in younger persons. Hypertension is categorized as severe health condition because people who suffer from this condition have a higher risk for heart disease and other medical problems than people with normal blood pressure.
These problems can be avoided if people are cautious and visit doctors for regular blood pressure check up and if hypertension is diagnosed, patients have to follow advice and get full treatment. People sometimes become careless and left this disease untreated. It is advised to such people that hypertension do not show any sign and suddenly lead to critical medical conditions such as arteriosclerosis, heart attack, stroke, enlarged heart or kidney damage. Hypertension makes the heart work harder to pump blood through the body.
The extra workload can make the heart muscle thicken and stretch. When the heart becomes too enlarged it cannot pump enough blood. If proper treatment of hypertension is not given at time, it may lead to heart failure. The function of the kidneys is to remove the body's wastes from the blood. If hypertension thickens the arteries to the kidneys, less waste can be filtered from the blood. As the condition deteriorates, the kidneys fail and wastes build up in the blood. Dialysis or kidney transplant are required when the kidneys fail. According to medical reports, about 25% of people who receive kidney dialysis have kidney failure because of hypertension.
Hypertension is mainly due to rise in the level of blood pressure. There are various actions or situations that can normally increase blood pressure. Physical activity can temporarily elevate blood pressure. Many stressful situations can lead to high blood pressure. In present situation, people work under stressful condition as they have to complete assignment with in time which is sometimes difficult to achieve. These conditions make blood pressure high. When the stress releases, blood pressure usually returns to normal.
Such temporary conditions do not permanently increases blood pressure and it is not considered that person is suffering from hypertension. Doctors diagnose hypertension when a person has several high blood pressure readings over a period of time. The cause of hypertension is not identified in 90 to 95 percent of the people who have it. If the cause of hypertension is not known, it is called primary or essential hypertension. When a person has hypertension caused by some medical problem, it is called secondary hypertension.
Secondary hypertension can be caused by different diseases. Many people who suffer from with kidney disorders may have secondary hypertension. Cushing's syndrome and tumors of the pituitary and adrenal glands often augment levels of the adrenal gland hormones cortisol, adrenalin, and aldosterone, which can lead to hypertension. Other medical conditions that can cause hypertension are blood vessel diseases, thyroid gland disorders, some prescribed drugs, alcoholism, and pregnancy.
Risk factors for hypertension are age over 60, male sex, race, heredity, salt sensitivity, obesity, inactive lifestyle, heavy alcohol consumption, use of oral contraceptives. In some cases, risk factors for hypertension can be changed, while others cannot. Some people inherit a tendency to get hypertension. If there are cases of hypertension in families then there are more chances of a person to have hypertension. A report found that the occurrence of high blood pressure among children is mainly because of overweight children and adolescents.
It is established that hypertension does not cause symptoms; therefore people have to go for routine blood pressure check. Blood pressure is measured with an instrument called a sphygmomanometer. A cloth-covered rubber cuff is wrapped around the upper arm and inflated.
When the cuff is inflated, an artery in the arm is squeezed to momentarily stop the flow of blood. Then, the air is let out of the cuff while a stethoscope placed over the artery is used to detect the sound of the blood spurting back through the artery. This first sound is the systolic pressure, the pressure when the heart beats. The last sound heard as the rest of the air is released is the diastolic pressure, the pressure between heart beats. Both sounds are recorded on the mercury gauge on the sphygmomanometer.
Normal blood pressure is defined by a range of values. Blood pressure lower than 120/80 mm Hg is considered normal. If a blood pressure reading is 120/80 or higher for the first time, the physician ask patient to another blood pressure check. Diagnosis of hypertension usually is made based on two or more readings after the first visit.
It is important for every person to know about range of blood pressure which causes hypertension so that they can visit doctors in time and control major diseases. Blood pressure measurements are categorized in stages, according to severity: -Normal blood pressure: less than less than 120/80 mm Hg -Pre-hypertension: 120-129/80-89 mm Hg -Stage 1 hypertension: 140-159/90-99 mm Hg -Stage 2 hypertension: at or greater than 160-179/100-109 mm Hg
Doctors evaluate hypertension by typical physical examination which includes: medical and family history, physical examination, and ophthalmoscopy: Examination of the blood vessels in the eye, chest X ray, electrocardiograph (ECG), blood and urine tests. Through medical and family history, doctors can get much information to decide if the patient has any conditions or disorders that might cause the hypertension. A family history of hypertension provides information of a genetic predisposition for hypertension.
Medical practitioners conduct the physical exam by taking several blood pressure readings at different times and in different positions. The physician uses a stethoscope to listen to sounds made by the heart and blood flowing through the arteries. The pulse, reflexes, and height and weight are checked and recorded. Because hypertension can damage to the blood vessels in the eyes, the eyes may be checked with an instrument called an ophthalmoscope. The doctor will look for thickening, narrowing, or hemorrhages in the blood vessels.
A chest x ray is also advised to detect an enlarged heart, other vascular (heart) abnormalities, or lung disease. An electrocardiogram (ECG) measures the electrical activity of the heart. It can be detected if the heart muscle is enlarged and if there is injury in the heart muscle from blocked arteries. Urine and blood tests are done to assess health and identify other disorders that can cause hypertension.
Treatment for primary hypertension is not available but blood pressure can almost controlled with the correct treatment. If person is having hypertension, the main aim of doctors is to lower the blood pressure to levels that will avoid heart disease and other complications of hypertension. If patient is suffering from secondary hypertension then doctors concentrate on the diseases that cause hypertension and provide treatment in addition to the hypertension itself. If the line of treatment these disorders is correct and patient is cured then secondary hypertension can be controlled. Guidelines recommend that clinicians work with patients to agree on blood pressure goals and develop a treatment plan for the individual patient.
Definite combinations of medications and lifestyle modification differ from individual to individual. If patient has lower blood pressure, treatment may include changes in diet, getting regular exercise, and taking antihypertensive medications. Patients who are in the stage of the pre-hypertension range often are recommended to change their lifestyle only. People have to change their way of life to reduce blood pressure by reducing salt intake, reducing fat intake, losing weight, getting regular exercise, quitting smoking, reducing alcohol consumption, managing stress.
Patients who come under the Stage 1 hypertension range may be recommended to take antihypertensive medication. Various drugs have been developed to treat hypertension. Medications are advised according to the stage of hypertension, side effects, other medical conditions the patient may have, and other medicines the patient is taking. If single medicine does not effective to lower blood pressure enough, a different medicine may be tried or another medicine may be added to the first. If the patient's condition is critical, he may be primarily given a combination of medicines to control their hypertension.
To prevent hypertension, people are advised to avoid or eliminate recognized risk factors. Even persons at risk because of age, race, or sex or those who have an inherited risk can lower hypertension. The risk of hypertension can be lowered by changing lifestyle. It is more important to have good knowledge of disease. Note: This information is just for knowledge of disease. If such type of medical condition develops, consult your doctor.