High blood pressure (hypertension) affects about 30% of the nation. It’s a well-known problem that healthcare systems spend millions of dollars on each year. However, despite being well-known, you’ve just discovered that it now affects you, too. So you have high blood pressure, what should you do now?
High Blood Pressure Statistics and Facts
First of all, learning about hypertension in the basic form of statistics is one way to assess how it may affect you.
Here are a few key statistics and facts:
- High blood pressure affects one-thirds of American adults.
- High blood pressure rarely shows symptoms, which is why doctors refer to it as the “silent killer”.
- Only about 54% of those with high blood pressure have it under control
- In 2014, high blood pressure contributed to more than 410,000 American deaths
These statistics aren’t to scare you but inform you of how hypertension seriously impacts lives and to not take it lightly.
Usually when you think you may be suffering from a health condition, the first thing you do is look for symptoms and see if they match what you have.
However, when it comes to hypertension, there is no list of symptoms because most of the time you won’t experience any.
There is a myth that people with hypertension will experience headaches, sweating, nervousness, facial flushing, trouble sleeping, and other symptoms.
But the truth is that people with hypertension hardly experience any symptoms, which is why the condition is known as a “silent killer.”
If you are waiting to experience any symptoms for hypertension, it will be too late. Don’t avoid regular blood pressure checkups; otherwise, you are risking your life.
So You Have Hypertension, What Should You Do Now?
Make sure you’ve talked with your doctor about medication needs, dietary changes, etc. That way, you know what your best available options for treatment are that are specifically for you.
Most cases of high blood pressure are brought on by lack of exercise, poor dieting decisions, or both. These decisions can lead to obesity, which also increases the risk for hypertension.
Assessing your habits that may be harming you and making daily goals to create new habits is the best way to combat hypertension.
Learning to make healthy choices and read labels at the grocery store can help you to lower your blood pressure. Reducing salty and fatty foods can do wonders for your heart-health.
Additionally, adding 30 minutes of exercise to your day each day can strengthen your heart and reduce the amount of plaque built up in your blood vessels.
Another obstacle you may need to focus on is your stress levels. High stress can greatly affect your blood pressure levels. Having a way to relieve stress, like exercising, can release endorphins which make you happier and calmer.
Just because you have high blood pressure does not mean that you won’t be able to control it or even bring your levels back to normal.
A constant effort and clear communication with your doctor will help you to find a solution. Following any directions from your doctor will be the most important thing you can do.