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Take care of your hypertension

22 Nov


Hypertension if left untreated can and often results in deaths or life altering stroke. Hypertension is an insidious disease as it has not symptoms. I discovered I had high blood pressure quite accidentally. I was walking in a mall with a friend who happened to be a nurse. I saw one of those hbp machines in the drug store and decided to check my pressure just for the heck of it. My nurse friend was shocked to see my pressure reading was 180 over 99.  We took my pressure several times and the reading did not change. She said that I should follow her home and she will check my pressure with her machine that she had at home.  My pressure was even higher. She told me I have to see a doctor ASAP. When I went to the doctor he immediately prescribed me the water pills. I tried to say if I could do anything to help my condition before starting on pills and he had to tell me more than once that once a person has hpb that’s it. There is no turning back I would have to contend myself with being on the pills all the time. I tried to resist by not taking the pills at first, I tried walking, exercising watching my diet to see if it would make a difference but it didn’t and my doctor gave me a good talking about the risks. Reluctantly I started taking my pills religiously but I have over the years (last 4 years) have done little things to improve my hpb.  I am on the DASH diet, I have lost about 40 pounds in four years and my bp is consistently under 120 over 60 or 70.  I still take the one pill and I am hoping my doctor will eventually cut the dosage to half at some point.

Although hypertension seldom produces symptoms, the intense pounding of blood gradually damages the artery walls. Small arteries are especially vulnerable. The walls respond by thickening and losing their elasticity and strength. As a result, less blood can pass through them, depriving surrounding tissues of oxygen and nutrients. The vessel walls are also more prone to rupture. Eventually, hypertension damages not just the blood vessels themselves, but also the heart, brain, kidneys, and eyes. These are the “target organs” of hypertension — those most likely to be affected by the disease.The longer you have hypertension, the greater your chances of developing target-organ damage and, consequently, major diseases such as heart disease, kidney disease, and eye damage. African Americans are particularly at risk: Not only are they more likely to develop hypertension, but they are also more apt to suffer from its complications. African Americans with hypertension have higher rates of stroke, heart disease, kidney disease, and diabetes compared with whites with hypertension. African Americans are also more likely to die as a result of hypertension than whites are.

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