Also known as hypertension, high blood pressure is considered a “silent killer” because it rarely causes symptoms but can lead to life-threatening conditions. Thankfully, high blood pressure is treatable and even reversible, with proper care. That’s why regular check-ups with your doctor are so important. When it comes to high blood pressure, you want to get ahead of it before it wreaks havoc on your body.
Do you want to learn about your own blood pressure health? Dr. Rakesh Chugh in Tinley Park, Illinois, takes pride in being able to offer patients high-quality treatment. He and the rest of our team will treat your high blood pressure and help you live the healthiest life possible.
High blood pressure basics
Your blood pressure reading is based on the amount of blood your heart pumps and the level of resistance to blood flow within your arteries. If factors, such as plaque buildup cause your arteries to narrow, your heart has to work harder to pump blood through them.
The higher both numbers of your reading are, the riskier it is for your health. A normal blood pressure reading falls lower than 120 over 80. Up to 129 over 80 is considered elevated blood pressure and 130 over 80 and above is considered high.
Signs of high blood pressure
Most people don’t notice if their heartbeat increases and no one can actually feel their arteries narrowing. In rare cases, high blood pressure causes shortness of breath, headaches, or nosebleeds. But these symptoms are common and linked with many other health problems, which is why they aren’t useful warning signs. Since high blood pressure doesn’t typically cause specific symptoms, the only way to know your levels are high is through a medical test.
Diagnosing high blood pressure
Many people find out they have hypertension at a standard physical, which is one reason why yearly exams are so important. If you have risk factors, such as a family history of high blood pressure or heart disease, you might benefit from more frequent exams.
The blood pressure test, for example, involves an inflatable arm cuff, which is placed over your upper arm. Then, your levels are assessed using a special gauge. Once you’ve been diagnosed with high blood pressure, Dr. Chugh will go over possible treatment options.
High blood pressure treatment
Sadly, many people find out they have blood pressure issues after an event, such as a heart attack or stroke. In some cases, these events are fatal. Taking steps to improve your blood pressure levels can both prevent hypertension and help bring high levels back within a normal range. Treatment measures may include:
A heart-healthy diet Improved exercise habits Improved sleep habits Limiting alcohol intake Stopping smoking Stress management Medications, such as diuretics, ACE inhibitors, or calcium channel blockers
To learn more about hypertension and how to lower high blood pressure, contact Dr. Chugh’s office to schedule an exam today.