By Dr. Chintan B. Patel, General Physician
Yes, they are closely related! Hypertension acts as a catalyst to worsen heart health. It is considered a silent killer. Hypertension or High Blood Pressure is a serious medical condition which occurs when the pressure of the blood pumping through your arteries is too strong which can result into the damage of your blood vessels and cause health problems such as heart attack, stroke, heart failure and kidney disease.
Blood pressure readings are given as two numbers. The top number is called the systolic blood pressure and the bottom number is called the diastolic blood pressure. The bottom number is the pressure when the heart is relaxing and filling back up with blood.
For example, 120 over 80 (written as 120/80 mmHg) which lies into the normal blood pressure range.
High blood pressure (hypertension) arises when the normal range is raised to 140/90 mmHg or above.
- Severe headache
- Vision problems
- Chest pain
- Difficulty breathing
- Irregular heartbeat
- Blood in the urine
- Pounding in your chest, neck, or ears.
Let’s see How High B.P affects our Body?
Following are the complications high blood pressure can cause when it’s not effectively controlled.
- Damage to your arteries
- Damage to your heart
- Damage to your brain
- Damage to your kidneys
How it affects our Heart?
Heart Attack happens when High Blood Pressure causes damaged and blocked arteries which further causes blood supply failures and therefore, heart muscle tissue die when coronary arteries do not supply blood. As a whole, Hypertension or High Blood Pressure damages the entire circulatory system, increases the workload of the heart, can cause the heart to enlarge and fail to supply the needed blood to the body, hence, causing heart failure.
Possible Causes of Hypertension-
The higher your blood pressure, the higher is your risk of serious health problems in the future. There are many risk factors for high blood pressure. Factors like age, family history etc are something you cannot change however, one should look into the possible causes and try to avoid/control for a healthier life:
- Less Body Workout
- Eating an unhealthy diet
- Consuming excess salt
- Drinking alcohol
- Not enough sleep
- Taking a lot of stress etc.
Regular physical activity is very important and helps to lower blood pressure. Pick something which you can enjoy so that you can do it regularly and stick with it. You could just walk briskly at least 150 minutes a week.
Limit salt intake, too, because salt causes fluid retention, which increases blood pressure. Many people don’t realize that most salt doesn’t come out of a salt shaker is from processed and restaurant food. So, cook with unprocessed fresh fruits, vegetables and lean sources of protein at home, and limit how often you eat out to no more than one to two times a week. Don’t drink too much alcohol. If you smoke, quitting is the most important thing above anything. Smoking does not increase blood pressure, but smoking combined with high blood pressure or with any other risk factor is especially dangerous.
Keep a regular check on your blood pressure level and seek the doctor’s advice for keeping it under control!