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High Blood Pressure Diagnosis Treatment and Medicines FAQs

High Blood Pressure HBP or Hypertension

These days the heart disease of hypertension is rampant and we need to have sufficient information about it to curb it. Going through this article will definitely enable you to have a thorough understanding about High Blood Pressure and all aspects associated with it.

    HBP or hypertension Diagnosis

    Your doctor or expert will generally position an inflatable arm cuff around your arm to assess your blood pressure using a pressure-measuring gauge to assess your blood pressure.
    There are two figures in a reading of blood pressure provided in millimeters of mercury (mm Hg).
    When your heart beats (systolic pressure), the first or upper number measures the pressure in your lungs.
    The second number, or lower, measures the pressure between beats in your lungs (diastolic pressure).

    Measurements of blood pressure fall into four general classifications:

    1.   Normal blood pressure. If it is below 120/80 mm Hg, your blood pressure is normal.

    2.   Elevated blood pressure. High blood pressure is a systemic pressure of 120 to 129 mm Hg and a diastolic pressure of less than 80 mm Hg.
       Without taking measures to regulate blood pressure, elevated blood pressure tends to get worse over time.

    3.   Stage 1 hypertension. Stage 1 hypertension is a systolic pressure of between 130- and 139-mm Hg or a diastolic pressure of between 80- and 89-mm Hg.

    4.   Stage 2 hypertension. More severe hypertension, hypertension in phase 2 is a 140 mm Hg or greater systolic pressure or a 90 mm Hg or higher diastolic pressure.

    It is essential to read both figures in a blood pressure reading. But even more critical is the systolic reading after 50 years of age. Isolated systolic hypertension is a disorder with normal diastolic pressure (less than 80 mm Hg) but with elevated systolic pressure (higher than or equal to 130 mm Hg).
    This form of high blood pressure is prevalent among individuals over 65 years of age.
    Before diagnosing you with high blood pressure, your physician will probably take two to three blood pressure measurements at three or more distinct appointments each.
    This is because blood pressure usually differs throughout the day, and during doctor visits (white coat hypertension), it can be increased.
    In both arms, your blood pressure should usually be evaluated to determine if a distinction exists. Using a suitable-sized arm cuff is essential.

    Your health care provider may ask for your blood pressure to be recorded at home to provide further data and verify if the blood pressure is high.
    A 24-hour blood pressure surveillance test called ambulatory blood pressure monitoring may be recommended by your doctor to verify that you have high blood pressure.
    The test unit measures your blood pressure periodically over 24 hours and gives a more exact image on the average daily and night time of changes in blood pressure. These devices cannot, however, be reimbursed at all medical facilities.

    If you have any high blood pressure, your physician will review your history of medicine and do a physical test.

    Routine testing, for example, urinalysis, blood tests, cholesterol tests and an electrocardiogram, may be recommended for your doctor. It is a test that measures the electrical activity of your heart. 
    Your doctor may suggest further tests for additional indications of heart disease, such as an echocardiogram.

    Doctor or Cardiologist measuring Hight Blood Pressure of a Patient

    Take blood pressure at home

    Monitoring your blood pressure at home is a significant way to verify whether your blood pressure therapy works, check if you have high blood pressure, or diagnose worsening high blood pressure.

    Home blood pressure monitoring is widespread and cheap, and you don't need a prescription to purchase one. 
    Home blood pressure surveillance is not a replacement for your doctor's visits, and home blood pressure tracking may have certain constraints.

    Make sure a validated device is used and make sure the cuff fits. Bring the monitor to your doctor's office once a year to verify its precision.
    Talk to your physician about starting blood pressure checking at home.

    The American Heart Association does not recommend devices that measure your blood pressure on your wrist or finger.

    High Blood Pressure Diagnosis and Treatment

    You can go a long way to controlling high blood pressure by changing your lifestyle. 
    Your physician may suggest lifestyle modifications, including:
    •          Getting physical exercise regularly
    •            Eat a cardiac diet with less salt
    •            Limit your alcohol consumption
    •           If you are overweight or obese, maintain a good weight or lose weight
    But modifications in lifestyle are not enough at times. Your doctor may suggest medication to reduce your blood pressure with diet and exercise.
    Your objective of treating blood pressure relies on how healthy you are.
    Your objective for treating blood pressure should be below 130/80 mm Hg if:
      ·       You are suffering from chronic renal illness, diabetes, or heart illness.
        ·       You are an excellent 65-year-old adult
        ·       You are a healthy adult younger than 65 years of age with a 10% or greater risk of developing cardiac illness over the next ten years.
    Although, the optimal blood pressure target is 120/80 mm Hg or lower, physicians are uncertain if you need therapy (medication) to achieve that.
    You are not required to change your medicines if you're 65 years old or older and drugs produce reduced systolic blood pressure (e.g., less than 130 mm Hg), unless they cause adverse impacts on your health or quality of life.

    Depending on your blood pressure and other medical issues, your doctor prescribes the category of medicines.
    It is useful to create a personalized therapy plan with a team of medical experts who are experienced in treating high blood pressure.

    Medicines for treating high blood pressure

    Thiazide diuretics. Diuretics sometimes referred to as water pills, are medicines that operate on your kidneys to assist remove sodium and water from your body and reduce blood volume.
    In high blood pressure medicines, thiazide diuretics are often the first, but not the only, option. 
    Chlorthalidone, hydrochlorothiazide (Microzide) and others are diuretics of thiazide.

    If you are not taking a diuretic and your blood pressure stays high, speak to your doctor about adding a drug or replacing it with a diuretic you are presently taking.

    For individuals of African ancestry and elderly individuals, diuretics or calcium channel blockers may operate better than angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors alone. 
    Increased urination is a common side effect of diuretics.

    Angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors. These medicine, such as lisinopril (Zestril), benazepril (Lotensin), captopril (Capoten) and others assist in relaxing blood vessels by preventing the development of a natural chemical that narrows blood vessels. People with chronic kidney disease may profit as one of their medicines from getting an ACEinhibitor.

    Angiotensin II receptor blockers (ARBs). These medicines assist in relaxing the blood vessels by preventing the action of a natural chemical that narrows the blood vessels, not the formation. Candesartan (Atacand), losartan (Cozaar) and others are among the ARBs. People with chronic kidney disease may profit as one of their drugs from getting an ARB.

    Calcium channel blockers. These drugs including amlodipine (Norvasc), diltiazem (Cardizem, Tiazac, etc.) and others help relax your blood vessel muscles.
    Some of them slow down your heart rate. For elderly individuals and individuals of African ancestry, calcium channel blockers may operate better than ACE inhibitors alone.

    Grapefruit juice interacts with certain blockers of the calcium channel, raising blood concentrations of the drug and placing you at a higher risk of side effects.
    If you are worried about interactions, talk to your physician, or pharmacist.

    Additional medicines sometimes used to treat high blood pressure.

    If you have difficulty achieving your blood pressure objective by combining the medicines mentioned above, your doctor may prescribe:
    Beta-blockers. These drugs reduce your heart's workload and open your blood vessels, causing your heart to beat more slowly and less forcefully. 
    Acebutolol (Sectral), atenolol (Tenormin) and others are beta-blockers.
    Beta-blockers are usually not recommended as the only medication you are prescribed, but they can be useful when combined with other medicines for blood pressure.

    Alpha-blockers. These drugs decrease blood vessel nerve impulses, minimizing the impacts of natural chemicals that narrow blood vessels. 
    Doxazosin (Cardura), prazosin (Minipress) and others are among the alpha-blockers.

    Alpha-beta blockers. Alpha-beta blockers slow the heartbeat to decrease the quantity of blood to be pumped through the vessels in addition to reducing nerve impulses to the blood vessels.
    Carvedilol (Coreg) and labetalol (Trandate) are alpha-beta blockers.

    Antagonists of aldosterone. Spironolactone (Aldactone) and eplerenone (Inspra) are examples of these.
    These medications block the impact on the blood pressure of a natural chemical that can lead to salt and fluid retention.

    Vasodilators. These drugs, including hydralazine and minoxidil, operate straight on your muscles' walls, avoiding tightening of the muscles and reducing your arteries.

    Renin-inhibitors. Aliskiren (Tekturna), the kidney enzyme that begins a chain of chemicals that raises blood pressure, slows down renin production.

    Aliskiren operates by decreasing renin's capacity to start this process. You should not bring aliskiren with ACE inhibitors or ARBs because of the danger of severe complications, including stroke.

    Central-acting agents.  These drugs stop your brain from signaling the heart rate of your nervous system and reducing the blood vessels. Clonidine (Catapres, Kapvay), guanfacine (Intuniv, Tenex), or methyldopa, are some of the examples.

    Your doctor might prescribe a combination of low dosage medicines instead of large doses of one single medicine to reduce the number of daily doses you need.
    Two or more drugs are more efficient than one. They are usually efficient. 
    It is sometimes a question of trial and error to find the most effective medicine or drug combination.

    Hypertension resistance: if your blood pressure is hard to control

    If your blood pressure stays stubbornly high, you may have strong hypertension even if you have at least three kinds of hypertension medication, one of which is generally a diuretic.

    People who have regulated high blood pressure but at the same moment take four distinct kinds of medication are also regarded to have resistant hypertension in order to attain this control.
    It is usually necessary to reconsider the likelihood of a secondary cause of high blood pressure.

    Having resistant hypertension does not imply that you will never lower your blood pressure. Indeed, if you and your doctor can recognize what's behind your persistently high blood pressure, there's an excellent possibility you'll be able to achieve your objective with more efficient therapy.
    High Blood Pressure Stages Chart Diagram

    Other HBP medicines

    Even though diet and exercise are the best strategies to reduce blood pressure, supplements may also assist to reduce your blood pressure. More study is, however, necessary to determine the possible advantages. In other words:

    ·       Folic acid

    ·       Fiber, such as psyllium blond and bran wheat
    ·       Minerals like magnesium, calcium, potassium, etc.
    ·       Supplements or goods that boost nitric oxide or expand blood vessels such as cocoa, coenzyme Q10, L-arginine or garlic
    ·       Omega-3 fatty acids found in fatty fish, fish oil supplements with high doses of flaxseed.
    Some study is investigating whether vitamin D can lower blood pressure, but more research is required.
    Although it is best to include these supplements as ingredients in your diet, pills or capsules may also be taken.

    Talk to your doctor before adding to your blood pressure therapy any of these supplements.

    Some supplements may interact with drugs, resulting in damaging side effects, such as an enhanced danger of bleeding that may be deadly.

    You can also exercise relaxation techniques to assist you to relax and decrease your stress levels, such as deep breathing or meditation. These methods can reduce your blood pressure momentarily.

    Your physician or specialist in hypertension may:

    ·       Check for other circumstances and suggest that you do not take any medication that worsens your blood pressure.
    ·       Assess your prospective causes and determine whether they can be addressed.
    ·       Recommend that you monitor your blood pressure at home to see if your doctor's office may have higher blood pressure (white coat hypertension).
    ·       Suggest healthy lifestyle modifications, such as a healthy diet with less salt, a good weight, and how much alcohol you drink.
    ·       Consider adding an antagonist of aldosterone such as spironolactone (Aldactone), which can lead to resistant hypertension control.
    ·       Make changes to your medications for high blood pressure to achieve the most effective combination and doses.

    Some experimental therapies such as ablation of renal sympathetic nerves (renal denervation) by catheter-based radiofrequency and electrical stimulation of carotid sinus baroreceptors are being researched.
    If you are not taking your medicines for high blood pressure precisely as directed, your blood pressure may be paying the cost. If you skip doses because you are unable to afford the medication because you have side effects or forget to take your medicines, speak to your doctor about alternatives. Without guidance from your doctor, don't alter your therapy.

    Home and lifestyle solutions for BP

    Lifestyle modifications can assist you in managing elevated blood pressure and stopping it even if you take medicine for blood pressure. What can you do here?

    Increase physical exercise. Regular physical activity can contribute to a reduction in your blood pressure, stress management and health risk and weight control.
    Go for a mild aerobic activity for at least 150 minutes per week or 75 minutes per week or combine a mild and energetic activity.
    For instance, try to walk quickly for 30 minutes most days of the week.
    Or attempt interval training, where brief explosions of intense activity and brief periods of light retrieval alternate.
    To do exercises at least two days per week for muscle reinforcement.

    Lower your diet's salt. To restrict the amount of sodium to less than 2,300 mg per day. 
    Reduced consumption of sodium, 1,500 mg or less daily is however optimal for most adults.

    While reducing the quantity of salt you consume with the spring shaker, you should usually also take into consideration how much salt you eat in processed foods, such as canned soups or frozen dinners.

    Keep your weight healthy. If you are overweight or obese, maintaining a proper weight can assist you to regulate your high blood pressure and reduce the risk of associated health issues.

    Generally, with each kilogram (about 2.2 pounds) of weight you lose, you can decrease your blood pressure by about 1 mm Hg.

    Limit the amount of alcohol. Alcohol can increase your blood pressure even if you are healthy.
    Do this in moderation if you choose to consume alcohol.
    This implies up to one drink per day for females for healthy adolescents, and up to two beverages per day for males.
    One beverage is twelve ounces of beer, five ounces of wine or 1.5 ounces of 80-resistant liquor.

    Don't smoke. Tobacco can damage the walls of the blood vessels and accelerate the process of plaque building in the arteries. 
    Ask your physician to assist you in stopping smoking.

    Eat healthy food. Eat good food. Eat a cardiovascular diet. 
    Please test dietary approaches that emphasize fruits, vegetables, whole grains, poultry, fish and fatty dairy foods to stop hypertension (DASH) diet.
    Get plenty of potassium to avoid and regulate hypertension.
     Eat fewer trans-fat and saturated fat.

    Controlling stress. Reduce as much stress as you can. Practice healthy methods of coping, such as relaxing muscles, breathing deeply or meditation.
     It can also assist to get regular physical exercise and plenty of sleep.

    Check the blood pressure at home. Home blood pressure testing can assist you to maintain your blood pressure tabs closer, demonstrate if the medication works, and even warn you and your doctor about future problems.

    Home blood pressure tracking is not a replacement for your doctor's visits, and home blood pressure monitoring may have certain constraints.

    Even if you usually read, do not stop or change your medicine or change your diet without first speaking to your doctor.

    Check with your doctor if your blood pressure is under control how often you need to check it.

    During pregnancy, control blood pressure. If you are a high blood pressure lady, discuss how to manage your blood pressure during pregnancy with your doctor.

    Relax or breathe slowly deeply. To assist you to relax, practice taking profound, slow breaths. Some tools are accessible to encourage slow, deep breathing.
    Device-guided breathing may be a sensible nondrug alternative to lower blood pressure, according to the American Heart Association, particularly if anxiety accompanies high blood pressure or conventional treatments are not well tolerated.

    Coping with BP and Support 

    High blood pressure is not an issue you could deal with and ignore. This is a requirement that you must handle throughout your whole life.
    Take your medicines correctly to maintain your blood pressure under control. 

    ·       Make healthy habits. Eat healthy foods, lose weight and get periodic exercise. 
       Limit alcohol. 
       Quit smoke when you smoke.
    ·       Don't stop taking your medicinesif side impacts or expenses pose issues. Ask for other alternatives for your doctor.
    ·       Plan frequent visits to the doctor. A team effort is needed to treat high blood pressure effectively. 
       Your doctor can't, and you can't, do it alone. 
       Work with your physician to ensure that your blood pressure is secure and maintained.
    ·       Stress management. Say no to additional assignments, release adverse ideas, keep excellent relations, and be patient and hopeful.

    It can be challenging to stick to lifestyle changes, especially when you don't see or feel high-pressure symptoms.
    Recall the hazards of uncontrolled blood pressure if you need a motive. 
    It can also assist you to receive your friends and family support.

    Prepare your Appointment

    Have an appointment with your family doctor to have your blood pressure checked if you believe you may have high blood pressure.

    There is no need for unique preparations to check your blood pressure.

    You may want to wear your appointment with a short-sleeved shirt so that the blood pressure cuff can fit correctly around your arm. 
    Before your test, avoid eating, drinking caffeinated drinks, and smoking. 
    Before measuring your blood pressure, plan to use the toilet.

    Since some medications like over - the-count cold drugs, anti-depressants, birth control pills and so on can boost your blood pressure, it might be a good idea to bring your doctor's appointment with a list of medications and supplements.

    Do not stop taking any prescription drugs that, without the guidance of your doctor, you believe may influence your blood pressure.

    It's a good idea to be ready for your appointment because meetings can be short and there's often plenty to discuss. Here's some data for you to prepare for your appointment and your doctor's expectations.

    Doctor Treating a Blood Pressure patient at her clinic with instrument

    What can you do under High Blood Pressure?

    Write down any symptoms you have. High blood pressure rarely has symptoms, but heart disease is a risk factor. 
    It can assist your doctor to decide how aggressively your high blood pressure needs to be treated if you have symptoms such as chest pain or shortness of breath.

    Write down critical private information, including a family history of high blood pressure, elevated cholesterol, heart illness, stroke, kidney or diabetes, and any significant stresses or latest changes in life.

    Take with you, if necessary, a family member or friend

    Remembering all the information given to you during an appointment can be hard at times. 
    Someone accompanying you may remember something you've missed or forgotten.

    Be ready to discuss your diet and practices of activity. If you are not already following a diet or workout routine, be prepared to discuss any difficulties you may encounter in getting started with your doctor.

    Make a list of all the medicines you are taking, vitamins, or supplements.

    Question your doctor, write down your queries.
    Your time with your doctor is restricted, so you can make the most of your time together by preparing a list of issues.
    In the event, that time runs out, list your questions from the most important to the least important.
    Some fundamental issues to ask your physician about elevated blood pressure include:

    1.  Do I need to follow any constraints?
    2.  What kind of tests am I going to need?
    3.   Do I need any drugs?
    4.  What products do I have to eat or prevent?
    5.   How often do I need to plan my blood pressure appointments?
    6.   Am I supposed to monitor my blood pressure at home?
    7.  What are the solutions to your main suggested strategy?
    8.  I have other circumstances of health. How can I handle them together best?
    9.  Does the medicine you prescribe for me have a generic option?
    10.  Is there any printed material or brochures that I can bring back with me?
    11.  What is a suitable physical activity level?
    12.  Which online sources are you suggesting to visit?
    13.  Do I need to see a specialist?
    14. How frequently do I need to visit a cardiologist?

    Besides the questions you've been preparing to ask your doctor, do not hesitate to ask questions at any time during your appointment that you don't comprehend.

    What to expect from your doctor during HBP treatment?

    Several issues your doctor will probably ask you. Being prepared to respond to them can reserve time to spend more time on any points you want to spend. 
    Your physician may ask:
    1.        Are you smoking?
    2.        Do you have cholesterol, elevated blood pressure, or heart disease family history?
    3.        Do you have alcohol to drink? How many beverages are there in a week?
    4.        When have you checked your blood pressure last? So, what was your measurement of blood pressure?
    5.        What are the habits of your diet and practice?

    Meanwhile, what you can do

    Making healthy lifestyle modifications like quitting smoking, eating healthy foods, and becoming more physically active is never too early. These are primary lines of protection, including heart attack and stroke, against high blood pressure and its complications.

    NB: This article is not a medical advice but is based on prevalent medical media  information. Consult an authorized doctor for decisions.

    Author's Bio

    Doctor Shawna Reason, Virologist
    Dr. Shawna Reason
    Name: Shawna Reason

    Education: MBBS, MD

    Occupation: Medical Doctor / Virologist 

    Specialization: Medical Science, Micro Biology / Virology, Natural Treatment

    Experience: 15 Years as a Medical Practitioner

    About Me

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