If your blood pressure were too high, would you know it? Your diastolic and systolic blood pressure indicates good blood flow throughout your body and also heart, brain, liver, and kidney health. While the Centers for Disease Control reports that one in three Americans have hypertension, many are undiagnosed. At Gilbert Cardiology, your heart doctors want you to understand hypertension, its symptoms and what you can do to control it.
The silent killer
The American Heart Association called high blood pressure "the silent killer." Because hypertension shows few to no symptoms most of the time, many sufferers have no idea they have it or the serious complications which result from it.
That being said, very high blood pressure--called a hypertensive crisis of 180/120--can exhibit symptoms of:
- Facial flushing
These symptoms constitute a medical emergency and warrant a 911 call for immediate help to avoid stroke, heart attack, heart failure, aneurysm and more. As a point of comparison, normal blood pressure is 120/80 or lower.
More routine hypertension
Your Gilbert, AZ, cardiologists ask their patients to monitor their blood pressure levels regularly, particularly if they have the official diagnosis of hypertension or have another form of cardiovascular or kidney disease. Treatment may include medication, a low sodium diet, weight loss, and cardiovascular exercise as tolerated.
Additionally, smokers should ask their heart doctor or primary care physician for a tobacco cessation program which typically includes behavioral support and medications to control nicotine cravings. Limiting alcohol consumption lowers blood pressure, too, as does a heart-healthy diet high in fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and low-fat dairy and proteins.
Your cardiologist advises patients to monitor blood pressure levels at home and to come into the office for check-ups as needed. If you believe your job or other elements of lifestyle may contribute to your stress levels, your doctor can advise you on how to reduce stress and lower your blood pressure.
While patients cannot mitigate their heredity (hypertension can run in families), there is much to do to control blood pressure. Your doctor at Gilbert Cardiology will help you achieve your optimal level and keep it there.
Come see us
Your blood pressure is one of the major indicators of health. To discuss yours, please contact your cardiologists at Gilbert Cardiology for a consultation at (480) 786-9100.