High Blood Pressure
A person suffers from high blood pressure, also called hypertension, when their blood pressure reading is 140/90 mm Hg or higher.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), about 70 million American adults, which means 1 out of every 3 adults, have high blood pressure.
High blood pressure is usually associated with stress, smoking, high salt intake, anxiety, excessive drinking, and leading a sedentary lifestyle.
Other contributing factors include obesity, genetic factors, use of birth control pills or pain relievers, kidney disease and adrenal disease.
Usually, high blood pressure does not present noticeable symptoms. In some cases, it may cause headaches, shortness of breath or nosebleeds, but these symptoms occur when the blood pressure reading is extremely high.
If ignored, high blood pressure may lead to heart disease or even strokes. The only way to identify it is to regularly measure your blood pressure, either on your own at home or by a doctor. If you find the numbers are too high, start taking steps to control it.
Blood pressure can be measured by a blood pressure monitor, also called a sphygmomanometer. If it reads 140/90 mmHg or more, consult your doctor and be sure to take any prescribed medicine as directed to control it.
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