Chances are that if you live in the United States there is someone in your life that has hypertension. But what is hypertension? The answer is amazingly simple, and life altering at the same time. In order to understand what hypertension is, it also helps to understand some other information about this sadly fairly common medical condition.
- What is hypertension? In the simplest possible terms, hypertension is nothing more than the technical term for high blood pressure. Blood pressure is how the force of your blood against the walls of your arteries or vessels is measured. The normal range for blood pressure is when it is lower than 120/80.
- Causes. There are an amazingly large number of causes and contributing factors for contracting hypertension. For example if you are obese, often stressed, African-American, smoke, or only have a family history of high blood pressure you may be running the risk of contracting hypertension. Additionally hypertension can also be caused due to other medical conditions such as kidney disease, pregnancy, or even a disorder of the adrenal glands.
- Symptoms. Unlike with most medical conditions, hypertension does not come with very many readily recognizable symptoms. What this means is that most people only find out that they have hypertension when they have been tested by their doctor. However, if you are experiencing regular severe headaches, nausea, changes in your vision, confusion, or even repeated nosebleeds, you may want to be looked at by your doctor as soon as possible.
- Treatments. If your doctor does decide that you have hypertension, there are some treatments that are available to you. Most of the treatments will require that you make some changes in your lifestyle after consultation with your doctor. For example, by taking the proper medication, changing your diet, and increasing the amount of exercise you get, you can often dramatically reduce the amount of your high blood pressure.
Keep in mind that hypertension is an exceptionally serious medical condition that you should never try to manage on your own. This means that if you or someone that you care about has been diagnosed with high blood pressure, then you will really need to work closely with your doctor. It is only through the cooperative efforts of you and your doctor that you will be able to really get this problem under control.
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