I am back again with another interesting topic. Our last month series on healthy worker was centered on depression in case you missed out, read here.
In this article, I will be looking at the meaning, causes, signs and symptoms and the prevention of hypertension. It will be our great joy for you to learn something new and also share it with your family members and loved ones. Enjoy!
Hypertension, also known as high or raised blood pressure, is a condition in which the blood vessels have persistently raised pressure. Blood is carried from the heart to all parts of the body in the blood vessels. Each time the heartbeats, it pumps blood into the vessels. Blood pressure is created by the force of blood pushing against the walls of blood vessels (arteries) as it is pumped by the heart. The higher the pressure the harder the heart has to pump.
Normal blood pressure ranges from 120-140mmHg for systolic (blood pressure on the arteries when the heart beats) than between 80-90mmHg for diastolic (blood pressure on the arteries when the heart relaxes). So, normal blood pressure reading should be 120-140mmHg/80-90mmHg.
Causes of Hypertension
The causes of hypertension are multifactorial, meaning there are several factors whose combined effects produce hypertension.
- High salt intake or salt sensitivity: This occurs in certain populations such as the elderly, African Americans, people who are obese, or people with kidney (renal) problems.
- Genetic predisposition to high blood pressure: People who have one or two parents with hypertension have high blood pressure incidence about twice as high as the general population.
- Other risk factors include obesity, sedentary (non-active) lifestyle, and kidney failure.
Hypertension may not have any signs and symptoms, so it has been labeled “The Silent Killer”.
But some signs and symptoms include: –
- Shortness of breath
- Blurred vision
- A feeling of pulsations in the neck and head
Hypertension can be managed in two ways; this includes the Pharmacological method and the Non-Pharmacological method. The pharmacological method includes the use of medications. There are many different categories of blood pressure medications. The main types include:
- Beta blockers e.g. Atenolol, Cavedilol,
- Angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitorse.g. Lisinopril
- Angiotensin II Receptor (ARB) blockerse.g. Valsartan
- Calcium channel blockers e.g. Amlodipine
- Diuretics (water pills) e.g. Spirinolactone
Please consult your Doctor or Pharmacist before using any of these medications.
While the Non-Pharmacological method includes: –
- Quit smoking
- Lose weight if you are overweight
- Avoid alcohol
- Eat a low-sodium and low-fat diet
In conclusion, Hypertension affects 46% of the African population according to the World Health Organization (WHO) and so it is very important that you regularly check our blood pressure and to avoid things and situations that can elevate blood pressure.
It should be noted that regular checkups of your blood pressure can be done at your local Pharmacy or clinic. It is a very short and painless procedure. Make sure you check yours today!
This has been another amazing one and we hope you learned something new. We will see you next month with another new and interesting topic. Do have a wonderful day; Stay Healthy and God bless you.