Hypertension – what is it?

Hypertension or high blood pressure is when abnormally high (more than 140/90) is observed for an extended period. It can be caused by many things but in most cases can be avoided or treated by a change of lifestyle.

So what are the symptoms?

The funny thing about hypertension is that in most cases it is silent (receiving the name 'silent killer'), but frequent headaches, dizziness and lethargy can all be symptoms.

So how do I get it?

The disease of modern man is that of his own doing. Hypertension nine times out of ten is a lifestyle condition, meaning the choices you have made such as smoking, poor eating habbits and lack of frequent exercise all contribute to the cause of hypertension. But probably the single greatest cause and what is most prevalent in modern society is stress. Stress releases hormones that constrict blood vessels causing the heart to pump harder in order to get blood effectively to the extremities of the body. This in turn elevates blood pressure. Family history plays a massive part in some people ie lots of immediate family with the condition.

How do I find out if I have it?

After forty you should have regular checks with you GP to monitor your blood pressure.

What can you do to prevent it?

Modify your lifestyle, controlled calorie diets, regular intestinal exercise, find a way to counteract your stress levels in the work place and do not smoke.