Hypertension – What Causes It and How to Control It



It is no coincidence that hypertension is called the “silent killer” since it is one of the leading causes of morbidity and mortality in the world. Also known as arterial hypertension, it is a chronic disease that occurs when the pressure of the blood rises as it moves through the arteries.

In Bulgaria, more than 20% of people suffer from hypertension, both men and women aged 24-65. Usually, one in three 35-44-year-olds does not suspect that they have high blood pressure, and almost half of those who know about their disease are not receiving treatment.

What causes hypertension?

Normal blood pressure limits are considered to be up to 140/90 mm Hg. The higher number is the systolic pressure, at which the heart contracts to push blood into the arteries. The lower number is diastolic, when the heart is relaxed between two contractions.

Blood pressure fluctuates in different limits throughout the day, with the values at their highest ​​in the morning and afternoon, and lowest – at noon and at night. They can increase with physical exertion, with advancing age – also due to narrowed blood vessels and a combination of diseases.

Among the main factors causing hypertension are:

  • Physical: atherosclerosis, kidney infection, clogged artery, genetic heredity, obesity, smoking, increased consumption of coffee and wine, etc.;
  • Mental: nervousness, anxiety, constant fear, and emotional imbalance.

Risk factors that can be controlled are overweight, excessive consumption of salt and alcohol, lack of exercise, sedentary lifestyle, smoking, and emotional stress. Factors that cannot be controlled are age, gender and race, as well as genetic predisposition.

How can hypertension be controlled?

In order to successfully control hypertension, it needs to first be diagnosed by a cardiologist. You must visit a specialist if you experience neck pain in the morning and evening, but also symptoms such as palpitations or tightness in the chest, dizziness and blurred vision, shortness of breath during physical work, ear ringing, or throbbing sensations in the limbs.

If the blood pressure rises sharply above 180/120, a hypertensive crisis may occur. If timely measures are not taken to control hypertension, stroke, heart failure, atherosclerosis, diabetes, impaired kidney function, eye diseases, etc. can occur.

A relatively normal lifestyle with a condition such as hypertension can be achieved, as long as appropriate treatment and control are provided. Depending on the stage of the disease, your doctor will prescribe an appropriate hygiene regime and drug therapy.

Each hypertensive person can independently control their disease. What’s necessary:

  • Properly measuring blood pressure in the morning and evening;
  • Consuming a small amount of salt;
  • Maintaining body weight within normal limits;
  • Consuming more foods of plant origin and less animal fat;
  • Intake of vitamins A, C, E and D; potassium and calcium;
  • Increasing physical activity;
  • Quitting smoking and limiting alcohol consumption;
  • Getting enough rest and finding an effective way to overcome stress.

These control guidelines can help you prevent hypertension since presently no effective prophylaxis is known. Only regularly measuring the blood pressure can be considered as such, and, upon changes in its values ​​beyond the permissible level, visiting a specialist for the appointment of additional tests and, if necessary, administering therapy.

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