Allen Wellness & Medical Center

What Can I Do to Manage My High Blood Pressure?

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High blood pressure is a chronic health condition that can impact many other aspects of your health, especially when it’s not well-controlled. You may not realize it, but unmanaged high blood pressure can even be fatal.

You can learn how to manage your high blood pressure in order to prevent some of its worst-case complications. Dr. Evan Allen of Allen Wellness & Medical Center in Henderson, Nevada explains more about the facts you need to know.

What is high blood pressure?

High blood pressure (sometimes abbreviated as HBP) is a condition in which your blood pressure consistently remains above the range of 120/80.

These two numbers refer to the following:

Systolic blood pressure

As the first number in the series, your systolic blood pressure measures the pressure in your arteries as your heart beats.

Diastolic blood pressure

As the second number in the series, your diastolic blood pressure measures the pressure in your arteries as your heart rests.

These two numbers can vary slightly throughout the day and even from one day to the next. However, if your blood pressure readings are consistently above this range, we will probably diagnose you with high blood pressure.

What causes high blood pressure?

The causes of high blood pressure are multiple and varied. Sometimes, it may be caused by genetic factors, but it may have other causes as well. These may include the following:

  • Adrenal gland disorders
  • Illegal drugs that speed up your heart rate, like methamphetamine and cocaine
  • Congenital heart defects that affect your blood vessels
  • Obstructive sleep apnea
  • Kidney disease
  • Medications that may impact your blood pressure, including some sinus medications, birth control pills, and medications containing caffeine
  • Thyroid disease

Of course, one of the most common causes of high blood pressure is lifestyle-related. Certain regular health habits raise your cholesterol levels, which increases the amount of plaque that builds up in your arteries. When you have high cholesterol, it can make your blood vessels narrow, which causes your heart to work harder.

Lifestyle factors

I’m sure that we’ve all heard a lot about the importance of maintaining a healthy diet, getting enough sleep, and getting regular exercise. But if you’re like many people, you may not be able to consistently make these a habit.

Here’s how each of these factors can affect your health.