High Blood Pressure Medication
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One in four Americans will probably need high blood pressure medication at some point in their lives, so it's helpful to learn the basics of these drugs.
Transcript: If you're among the 25 percent of Americans with high blood pressure, your first line of defense will...
If you're among the 25 percent of Americans with high blood pressure, your first line of defense will usually be hypertension medication. If you have high blood pressure, your heart has to work harder to pump blood through your body. This can lead to the biggest killer in America: Heart disease. Luckily, prescription medication can help treat this common condition. Just like all people with hypertension are not the same, neither are all blood pressure medications! Let's look at some common options. Angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors, or ACE-inhibitors, and angiotensin receptor blockers, or ARB drugs, both effect the hormonal system that regulates blood pressure. The renin-angiotensin system, works like this: The kidneys produce an enzyme, renin, which is converted to the hormone angiotensin. Angiotensin controls constriction of the arteries. While active angiotensin causes them to narrow, the inactive form does not. Both ACE-inhibitors and ARB drugs stop angiotensin from becoming active so that it cannot narrow the arteries, effectively lowering blood pressure. ACE-inhibitors, like Vasotec and Zestril, are quite valuable, but with one downside: The common cough that often accompanies the medication. For this reason, some people may find ARB drugs, like Avapro and Cozaar, to be more convenient. Some people with hypertension are treated with a group of medications known as beta-blockers, like Tenormin, Inderal and Toprol. Beta-blockers work on the sympathetic nervous system, a part of the body that helps regulate involuntary functions, such as your heart beat. These medications slow the heart rate and reduce the force of its contractions. While beta-blockers are useful for hypertension suffers who also have angina or have experienced a recent heart attack, the side-effects, which can include depression and nightmares, don't make it ideal for everyone. Alpha-blockers, like Hytrin and Cardura, cause the heart's arteries to widen, thereby lowering blood pressure. Alpha-blockers may be particularly useful for patients with enlarged prostate glands. But, because they can actually increase the risk of heart-related problems, alpha-blockers are recommended for use only in conjunction with other drugs. Calcium channel blockers, or CCBs, inhibit the movement of calcium into the muscle cells of the heart and arteries. Because calcium is needed for the heart to contract, these drugs decrease the force of the heart's pumping, thereby lowering blood pressure. CCBs are available in sustained-release and short-acting form. Examples of commonly prescribed CCBs include Calan, Norasc, and Cardizem. Perhaps the oldest known hypertension medications are diuretics, like Hydrodiuril and Lasix. Excess salt in the body leads to excess fluid, which, in turn, causes increased pressure on the heart, or high blood pressure. Diuretics work in the tiny tubules of the kidneys to remove fluid from the body. No matter what medication or combination of medications your doctor prescribes for you, it is vital to take drugs EXACTLY per your physician's instructions.More »
Last Modified: 2013-05-01 | Tags »
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Handling high blood pressure is important in preventing cardiovascular disease. Thousands of people die every year due to high blood pressur complications. Get a handle on your blood pressure, starting now.
Transcript: Every 33 seconds, someone dies of cardiovascular disease. High blood pressure is often a precursor to...
Every 33 seconds, someone dies of cardiovascular disease. High blood pressure is often a precursor to heart disease, so preventing and controlling it is essential. Thirty percent of Americans have high blood pressure, or hypertension, and up to a third of them don't even know it! While extreme hypertension is often regulated with medication, some natural remedies can also help lower blood pressure. A. Blood pressure, which is measured in two ways, is the force at which the heart pumps blood. One measurement B. refers to systolic pressure, which measures blood pressure during heart contractions. C. The other measures diastolic pressure, or the force when the heart is relaxed. Blood pressure is expressed as systolic pressure over diastolic pressure. The optimal blood pressure is 120 over 80, while any measurement above 140 over 90 is classified as hypertension. While high blood pressure is cause for concern, lifestyle changes can often help control this condition. Watching what you eat is the first step to lowering high blood pressure. If you have hypertension, shake that salt habit! Although our bodies require only 500 milligrams of salt each day, most Americans ingest at least 7,000 milligrams! Once you have high blood pressure, too much sodium can make the problem worse. Replace salt with other delicious spices, like basil, dill and rosemary. A. Eating pasture-raised and organic meats is another easy way to lower blood pressure. B. By raising animals on natural grasses and foods, farmers can offer leaner cuts of meat. Following the specifications of the diet known as the dietary approach to stop hypertension, or DASH, can reduce high blood pressure within two weeks. A. The DASH diet recommends a daily consumption of 7 servings of grains, B. 5 servings of fruits C. and 5 of vegetables, D. 4 servings of nuts and beans, E. 2 servings of low-fat dairy, F. 2 or fewer servings of meats, G. and less than 5 weekly servings of sweets. A. You can also lower hypertension by eliminating tobacco and alcohol. B. Both can cause blood vessels to constrict, in turn making it harder for blood to flow through the body. Over fifty percent of people with high blood pressure are overweight. Just thirty minutes of moderate aerobic exercise, like swimming or biking three times a week, can help reduce obesity and reverse high blood pressure. Because high blood pressure is often linked to stress, lowering stress levels may also help curb hypertension. One effective stress-reliever is yoga-try it with the opanasana pose. Lie flat on your back. Inhale, bringing both knees into your chest; then, as you exhale, bring your legs back to the ground. Inhale again as you bring your left knee inward, stretching your chin to touch the knee. Repeat by alternating knees. The most important thing you can do to combat high blood pressure is get tested by your doctor during your annual check-up. This ten-second procedure could save your life. If you've been diagnosed with hypertension, you can take healthy steps to lower your blood pressure. Remember, though, to see your doctor before starting any diet regimen.More »
Last Modified: 2013-09-27 | Tags »
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What is hypertension? Hypertension is commonly known as high blood pressure. If untreated, this condition can lead to heart disease. Get more information by watching this video.
Transcript: One in four Americans has high blood pressure, and almost half of them don't even know it! Let's take...
One in four Americans has high blood pressure, and almost half of them don't even know it! Let's take a closer look at this common condition. To truly understand high blood pressure-or hypertension as it's known in the medical community-it helps to have a basic knowledge of the circular path through which blood flows. Normally, blood leaves the heart through arterioles, which then taper into small capillaries and supply the body with oxygen. The blood finishes its circular journey by returning to the heart. On occasion, various factors can cause the arterioles to narrow. When this occurs, the heart has to work harder to pump blood through the smaller opening. This is high blood pressure. It's easy to ignore the threat of hypertension. San Francisco 49ers great, Joe Montana, certainly wasn't worried about this condition-he was too busy leading his team to four Super Bowl victories! But despite his active lifestyle, Joe did have high blood pressure. Because hypertension is often asymptomatic, Joe wasn't even aware of the problem until after his retirement. Due to cases like this, doctors have nicknamed high blood pressure, "the silent killer." Not getting treatment for hypertension is bad news, because up to 70 percent of strokes are a direct result of the condition! Plus, high blood pressure contributes to heart attacks and kidney failure. To sidestep these consequences, a doctor should test your blood pressure at every check-up. Blood pressure is measured in two ways. One measurement refers to systolic pressure, which records blood pressure when the heart is contracting. The other measures diastolic pressure, or the force when the heart is relaxed. Blood pressure measurement is usually written as systolic over diastolic and provides the basis for determining whether a patient's blood pressure is in the healthy range, or if it's at dangerously high. Optimal blood pressure is below 120 over 80, while a measure above 140 over 90 is classified as hypertension. Blood pressure that lies in the middle is called pre-hypertension, and means that the patient is at risk of developing high blood pressure. In 95 percent of cases the cause of high blood pressure is unknown, but there ARE certain risk factors that increase your chances of developing hypertension. Among those with a higher hypertension risk are people with a family history of high blood pressure, people over the age of 40, those who are overweight or sedentary, women who take birth control pills and African-Americans. The only way to know for sure if you have hypertension is to visit your doctor regularly. Because hypertension is the precursor for many heart diseases, it is important to get checked at every visit. Becoming aware of the severity of high blood pressure, and actively being tested for it will help to ensure that the "silent killer" isn't silent in YOUR life.More »
Last Modified: 2013-09-27 | Tags »
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A few key lifestyle changes may help you in preventing high blood pressure. Watch this video for more information, and tips about what actions you can take.
Transcript: Is your blood pressure normal? That's great! But before you enjoy a celebratory drink, let's look at...
Is your blood pressure normal? That's great! But before you enjoy a celebratory drink, let's look at some ways to prevent hypertension from developing. Twenty-five percent of Americans have high blood pressure, or hypertension, and new cases develop every second. Because hypertension is the leading cause of stroke and congestive heart failure, it's important to take steps to prevent blood pressure from spiking. The best way to lower your chances of developing hypertension is to maintain a healthy weight. In fact, doing so can decrease your likelihood of high blood pressure six-fold! The simplest way to determine if you should lose weight is to calculate your body-mass index, or BMI. To check your BMI, you'll need to know your height in inches, and your weight in pounds. Multiply your weight in pounds by seven-hundred and three. Then, take your height in inches and square it. Divide the first figure by the second. The resulting number is your BMI. If your BMI falls between 18 and 24.9, you're in the normal range, while one between 25 and 29.9 equates to being overweight. A BMI of 30 or higher is obese. People with numbers in this range may want to consider losing some weight. One great way to maintain a healthy weight is to get regular exercise. Doing so can reduce your risk of developing high blood pressure by up to 50 percent, independent of its benefits on your weight! You don't have to be an Olympian to get the benefits of exercise. Even light activities, if done daily, can help reduce hypertension risk. Two important dietary changes can also help prevent hypertension. The first is reducing your alcohol intake. Because too much alcohol can increase your blood pressure, women should have no more than one drink a day, while men should stop at two. Remember when you're consuming alcohol that a drink is defined as 12 ounces of beer, 5 ounces of wine and 1.5 ounces of 80-proof liquor, like vodka. Excess salt in the body leads to excess fluid, which, in turn, causes increased pressure on the heart, or high blood pressure. To avoid this, it can help to reduce your salt intake. And while you're planning low-salt meals, remember these three important minerals: Potassium, calcium and magnesium. Each can help keep blood pressure at healthy levels. Find potassium in fruits and vegetables, like potatoes and bananas. Get calcium from low-fat dairy products and edamame. And stock up on magnesium with whole grains, nuts and seeds. While it's important to be aware that hypertension can produce negative consequences, it's also important to relax...there is evidence that repeated stressors can make blood pressure rise over time! So try to take some time-out during stressful phases to do something that relaxes you. A session of yoga, a long walk, or even deep breaths count! Because hypertension can have serious consequences, taking measures to ensure that you reduce your risk of developing it is a smart idea. Also, be sure to visit your physician regularly to have your blood pressure tested.More »
Last Modified: 2013-05-21 | Tags »
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If you have high blood pressure, treating common illnesses such as colds is a little more complicated. Consult your doctor before taking any medication. Learn more about common illnesses and HBP here.
Transcript: When you have high blood pressure, whether it's controlled or NOT, you need to be aware of potential...
When you have high blood pressure, whether it's controlled or NOT, you need to be aware of potential complications when you get a passing cold, or have to deal with an unrelated chronic health problem. For instance, if you come down with the flu, you may also have a fever. If it is higher than 101, your blood pressure may spike a bit. This is because the fever narrows the blood vessels and speeds up your heart rate, which increases blood pressure. Dehydration from fever or infection can also raise your blood pressure. However, significant dehydration can drop your blood pressure.Staying well hydrated during periods of illness is extremely important. Nausea and vomiting are also symptoms of many viruses. If you're on oral high blood pressure medication, it may be difficult to keep it down with frequent vomiting. Ask your doctor for suggestions, because it is dangerous to go off your meds without medical supervision. Bronchitis and pneumonia cause inflammation of the airways and lungs, constrict blood vessels, and may make the heart work harder to meet the body's oxygen demands. That can also boost blood pressure. You should ask your doctor if you need to adjust your blood pressure medications while you are ill. It's also possible that your blood pressure goes up because of the medications you use to TREAT your cold or flu. If you have high blood pressure you will need to AVOID all decongestants in over-the-counter and prescription medications. Luckily there are decongestant-free cold and flu medications that are safe for people with high blood pressure. Nasal congestion can be relieved with a simple saline nasal spray, or set up a cool-mist vaporizer to moisten the air and ease congestion. A quick gargle with salt water can soothe a sore, scratchy throat. A simple pain reliever like aspirin or acetaminophen can ease flu-related aches and pains. Another potential problem? Medications used to treat chronic illnesses, such as diabetes, depression, arthritis, and insomnia, can have adverse interactions with blood pressure medication. In these cases, you'll have to discuss your treatment options with your doctor. If you do have high blood pressure, be sure to check with your doctor before picking up any medications to treat a passing infection or a chronic condition. For more information on how to keep your blood pressure in check, look into other videos in this series.More »
Last Modified: 2013-06-13 | Tags »
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Knowing the facts about high blood pressure can save your life. Learn more about high blood pressure in this video.
Transcript: Knowing the facts about high blood pressure can save your life. FACT ONE. High blood pressure usually...
Knowing the facts about high blood pressure can save your life. FACT ONE. High blood pressure usually has NO symptoms - it's called the Silent Killer for a reason. That's why only 20% of people with high blood pressure know they have it. It is also an extremely common health problem. In FACT, more than 76 million American adults-about one out of every three-- have high blood pressure. High blood pressure is most common in men under age 45 and women 65 or older. It has also been found that African Americans develop high blood pressure more often, and at an earlier age, than whites and Hispanics. AND it's more common in African American women than men. It's also a FACT that about 400,000 people a year in the U.S. DIE from complications of high blood pressure.Now that we've got the facts sorted out, let's weed through the fictions. You may have heard: You CANNOT PREVENT high blood pressure if it runs in your family. But that's just not true.Lifestyle adjustments such as reducing salt intake, eating more fruits and vegetables,getting regular exercise, losing weight, quitting smoking and cutting down on drinking can make an ENORMOUS difference. Another common fiction: High cholesterol will always lead to high blood pressure. In reality, one doesn't always lead to the other, but they DO share risk factors. Fiction number three: High blood pressure medications can CURE the condition. More than two-thirds of Americans diagnosed with high blood pressure use medication to effectively treat and MANAGE the condition. However, if they were to suddenly stop taking medication, their blood pressure would most likely rise and complications could result. Medications can help MANAGE, but not CURE, high blood pressure. You should make a point to discuss your blood pressure numbers and any risk factors you may have including family history, diet or daily stressors with your doctor. For more information on living with high blood pressure, check out other videos on this site.More »
Last Modified: 2013-06-13 | Tags »
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High blood pressure can be controlled with medication; however, lifestyle changes can further improve your chances of beating this condition. Watch our video on HBP and lifestyle precautions for more information.
Transcript: If you've been diagnosed with high blood pressure there are a few activities you might want to avoid--...
If you've been diagnosed with high blood pressure there are a few activities you might want to avoid-- like that hot dog eating competition or riding the fastest roller coaster. Certain lifestyle precautions come along with a diagnosis of hypertension, even if you're successfully managing it with medications. For starters, you'll need to revamp your eating habits. Foods high in fat, cholesterol and sodium should now be off limits. Fat and cholesterol can result in plaque buildup in the blood vessels causing them to harden and narrow. The sodium draws excess water into the blood, increasing blood volume, which raises pressure. Even a small increase in the sodium in your diet can push up your blood pressure by 2 to 8 points. As for that morning cup of coffee-it seems to affect some people's blood pressure more than others. To see if you are sensitive to the effects of caffeine, check your pressure before AND within 30 minutes AFTER drinking a caffeinated beverage. If your blood pressure increases by five to 10 points, you may want cut out the caffeine. Exercise IS helpful for preventing high blood pressure, but if yours is ALREADY high, you need to exercise appropriately. An intense workout can raise blood pressure, so start slow and steady, monitoring your heart rate as you go. Your doctor can help design a safe exercise routine for you. Smoking and excessive alcohol drinking can also raise blood pressure and reduce the effectiveness of high blood pressure medications. Now let's take a look at your leisure time activities. Hypertension symptoms worsen in very high altitudes, due to a decrease in oxygen in the blood. If you're headed to the mountains, ask your doctor about possible medication changes.And at any elevation, you'll need to steer away from high-thrill activities, such as roller coasters, rides with extreme g-force, water slides with plunging drops, strong wave pools, bungee jumping, base-jumping, scuba diving or skydiving. They can all increase your heart rate suddenly, which can raise your blood pressure and cause an irregular heart beat or heart attack. Although sex can get your heart pounding pretty hard it is not risky for those with high blood pressure. Unfortunately, however, high blood pressure does damage blood vessels and can lead to erectile dysfunction in men, and problems with orgasm for women. High blood pressure medicine can also cause such problems.To learn about ways to lower and manage your blood pressure, check out other videos on this site.More »
Last Modified: 2013-08-23 | Tags »
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High blood pressure means that your blood is flowing through your arteries too forcefully. Learn more about high blood pressure and its consequences.
Transcript: "The silent killer." Sounds like a nickname for a stealthy murderer... and it IS. The silent killer,...
"The silent killer." Sounds like a nickname for a stealthy murderer... and it IS. The silent killer, better known as HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE or hypertension, often has no noticeable symptoms. That's why about one third of the 50 million Americans who have it, DON'T KNOW IT. But diagnosed or not, it can lead to a whole roster of life-threatening health problems, including heart attack and stroke. That's because high blood pressure puts pressure on the walls of your arteries and causes tiny tears in their lining. Scar tissue builds up around the tears and snags cholesterol that is floating by in your bloodstream. Eventually the cholesterol builds up, forming plaques that can narrow the blood vessels or break off and form clots that can trigger strokes. People with hypertension are also at a higher risk for an aneurysm because overstretched arteries are more likely to rupture. To find out if you have high blood pressure, all you need is a simple test. You can have it done at the doctor's or you can do it at home. The American Heart Association recommends that at home you use an automatic, cuff-style, bicep monitor. The test measures pressure in two ways. First, as the force of your blood against the walls of your blood vessels as your heart muscles contract. And second, when they RELAX. A measurement to aim for is 120 over 80. 140 over 90 is considered high, while anything above 180 over 110 qualifies as an emergency. There are two types of hypertension. Most adults have primary hypertension-which develops slowly over the years. Others have secondary hypertension, which is triggered by a specific factor, such as drug abuse, birth control pills or kidney problems. Risk factors for primary high blood pressure include: being older than 74, having a family history of the condition, being African American, being obese, physically inactive or a smoker, drinking alcohol frequently, being stressed out, eating too much salt, or taking in too LITTLE potassium or vitamin D. To get more details on hypertension, watch other videos in this series!More »
Last Modified: 2013-07-09 | Tags »
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Some over-the-counter medications, like decongestants, can increase blood pressure. If you have high blood pressure, you need to be extra careful starting new medications. Learn more about contraindications of high blood pressure.
Transcript: If you have high blood pressure - medically known as hypertension- it may mean that you need to make...
If you have high blood pressure - medically known as hypertension- it may mean that you need to make some adjustments to your lifestyle and diet --reducing salt intake, perhaps losing weight, eating a healthier diet and getting more exercise. You should also have a conversation with your doctor to talk about how which over-the-counter and prescription medications you can-AND CAN'T-take. A variety of medications can raise blood pressure and may not be safe for you to take anymore. For example, many over-the-counter COLD AND FLU remedies contain decongestants such as phenylephrine and pseudoephedrine [names on screen]. These cause a spike in blood pressure, so you'll need to find cold and flu remedies that don't contain them. Ask your pharmacist to point out over-the-counter products that ease fever, or soothe coughing, without the risky ingredients. Other alternatives that can provide some relief include saline nasal spray, enjoying a bowl of chicken soup, running a cool mist humidifier, drinking plenty of fluids and getting a lot of sleep. You will also have to talk to your doctor or pharmacist about using certain over-the-counter pain relievers to ease aches and pains. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs--called NSAIDs-- include favorite pain relievers such as aspirin, ibuprofen and naproxen. LONG-TERM use of these by elderly people with heart disease AND hypertension might RAISE their risk of death from heart attack or stroke. As an alternative, they may be able to use the pain reliever ACETAMINOPHEN, better known as Tylenol. People who have chronic migraines and high blood pressure face an additional challenge. They are often prescribed triptans, a class of drugs that were specifically created to treat migraine headaches. These medications work by constricting the blood vessels in the brain. But they can also tighten the vessels in OTHER parts of the body, which raises blood pressure, and is DANGEROUS for anyone with hypertension. CORTICOSTEROIDS are used to reduce inflammation associated with everything from tendonitis to Lupus and Crohn's disease. They work well, but they cause fluid retention, which then increases blood pressure. The BIRTH CONTROL PILL can also elevate blood pressure, especially in women who smoke or are overweight. If that describes you, or if you ALREADY have high blood pressure, your doctor will likely suggest you use another type of contraceptive. Some WEIGHT LOSS DRUGS are also unsafe for people with hypertension. Appetite suppressants-- such as phentermine, diethylpropion, phendimetrazine-may boost blood pressure. If you have high blood pressure, you should check with your doctor before starting - or ending -- ANY medication, whether prescription or over-the-counter ones. The risks aren't worth it.To learn more about high blood pressure, watch other videos in this series!More »
Last Modified: 2013-07-10 | Tags »
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Referred to as the ‘silent killer’, hypertension can cause blindness, brain aneurysms and kidney failure. It is extremely important to be aware of complications of hypertension. Learn more by watching our video.
Transcript: Your heart pumps blood through your arteries and veins. The measure of that force is called BLOOD PRESSURE....
Your heart pumps blood through your arteries and veins. The measure of that force is called BLOOD PRESSURE. When your heart pumps HARDER than normal, the blood PUSHES more forcefully against the walls of your blood vessels, and that causes HYPERTENSION, or high blood pressure. Blood pressure of 140 over 90 OR higher signals high blood pressure. Hypertension gradually gets worse over the years, and it can lead to some SERIOUS complications. High blood pressure stretches the walls of your arteries, making it more likely that they'll RUPTURE and trigger a STROKE or aneurysm. If you have hypertension, your risk of stroke may be 10 times greater than normal. Hypertension is also a significant risk factor for heart disease. When blood pushes hard against arterial walls, TINY tears often form and create scar tissue. Cholesterol circulating through the bloodstream snags on and ACCUMULATES at those tiny tears. This can narrow the blood vessels and, IF left untreated, can trigger a HEART ATTACK. Hypertension can also trigger formation of blood clots wherever blood vessels are narrowed or damaged. A clot can block blood supply to different parts of your body, triggering a heart attack or stroke. Yet ANOTHER danger to your heart: over time, the heart's muscles and valves may become DAMAGED because of all the extra pressure on them. This CAN lead to heart failure. Finally, you should remember that hypertension doesn't just damage the cardiovascular system. When blood vessels are in trouble, multiple organs are ALSO at risk. Severe hypertension makes you more susceptible to brain aneurysms, blindness AND kidney failure. Hypertension often has no symptoms, which is why it's called the "silent killer." That's why you SHOULD get your blood pressure checked regularly at your doctor's office! Watch other videos in this series to learn more about hypertension and heart disease.More »
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There are several risk factors of high blood pressure. Some you can control and some you can't. Find out if you're at risk.
Transcript: Most of the time, people with high blood pressure have PRIMARY, or essential, hypertension. It pops up...
Most of the time, people with high blood pressure have PRIMARY, or essential, hypertension. It pops up for no easily identifiable reason. Other people have what's called SECONDARY hypertension-it may be a symptom of a specific medical condition, a reaction to a medication or the result of using certain illegal drugs such as cocaine. What we do know about primary hypertension, however, is that there are some very strong risk factors that make you a likely candidate for the problem - and MOST of them are controllable, such as: SMOKING. The chemicals in tobacco can cause your arterial walls to constrict and encourage deposits of plaque, which narrows blood vessels. This double whammy makes it harder for the heart to push blood through the circulatory system, which raises blood pressure. WEIGHT. High blood pressure is twice as common in obese people. INACTIVITY. Your heart works harder if you're couch-bound. And THAT increases the force of blood on your arterial walls. STRESS. The chemicals and hormones the body releases in response to stress raise your blood pressure drastically. And you only make it worse if you try to calm down by eating, smoking or drinking alcohol. Because excessive drinking ups your risk for hypertension. You're also more likely to develop high blood pressure if you consume too much salt, too LITTLE potassium and too LITTLE Vitamin D. And elevated cholesterol levels cause vessel-narrowing plaque deposits that force the heart to pump harder to get blood throughout the body. Risk factors to be aware of, but that you CAN'T control, include: RACE. Unfortunately, hypertension is more common in African Americans, as is stroke and heart attack. AGE. According to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, about 75 PERCENT of women and 66 percent of men, 75 or older have hypertension. This is probably because as a person ages, arterial walls become less flexible, meaning there's less "give" for blood flow. GENETICS. Hypertension tends to run in families. Other risk factors? For most people, high blood pressure doesn't cause any symptoms. That's why you need to get your blood pressure checked regularly at a doctor's office. To learn more about high blood pressure and heart disease, watch other videos in this series!More »
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It's important to follow your doctor's instructions in treating high blood pressure. Find out more information about different treatments in this video.
Transcript: Since uncontrolled high blood pressure, or hypertension, leads to a multitude of health problems, it's...
Since uncontrolled high blood pressure, or hypertension, leads to a multitude of health problems, it's REALLY important to follow your doctor's INSTRUCTIONS and, if needed, to TAKE all medications as prescribed. Before your doctor puts you on meds, he or she will help you take charge of your lifestyle and diet. You may need to drink less alcohol, EAT more nutritiously, EXERCISE more, LOSE weight, QUIT smoking, and DE-stress. If such changes don't reduce your blood pressure, your doctor will likely prescribe a DIURETIC, commonly known as a water pill. This pill flushes your body of excess salt and water, relieving pressure on your blood vessels. Taking diuretics, particularly thiazides, may decrease your potassium levels-but they are usually the first choice because they have few other side effects. There are 2 other classes of diuretics-those that DON'T affect your potassium levels, and those that COMBINE the first 2 types. You and your doctor can decide which is best for you. If your blood pressure remains elevated, your doctor may prescribe a second, or alternate, medication that reduces your blood pressure in different ways. The options include: Beta blockers, which slow down your heartbeat. ACE or ARB inhibitors-THEY relax your blood vessels, which lowers pressure. CALCIUM CHANNEL blockers also relax blood vessels, but through a different process. There are still OTHER hypertension medications that doctors prescribe only when everything else doesn't work. They're stronger, and may come with additional side effects. They include: alpha blockers, vasodilators and renin inhibitors. They use different means toward the same end-blood vessel relaxation. ALL medications come with their own side effects. Your doctor will know what medication is best for you. Check out other videos in this series to learn more about high blood pressure.More »
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Some lifestyle changes and various medical options can be effective in pulmonary hypertension treatment. Watch our video to get more information.
Transcript: To relieve pulmonary hypertension, you should quit smoking, EAT healthfully, and STAY active. It's also...
To relieve pulmonary hypertension, you should quit smoking, EAT healthfully, and STAY active. It's also TREATED with a MYRIAD of medications. Your doctor will prescribe one that's appropriate for YOUR specific requirements. The various medical options include the following: VASODILATORS open narrowed blood vessels. They're administered through an IV attached to a pump on your belt or shoulder, or, through a NEBULIZER, which vaporizes the meds. DIURETICS help decrease fluid buildup in your lungs, and cut down on fluid throughout your body, which means your arteries don't have to pump as much blood. Other drugs, such as endothelin receptor antagonists and, sometimes, calcium channel blockers, STOP your pulmonary arteries from constricting. If pulmonary hypertension goes UNMANAGED, blood clots, internal bleeding, irregular heartbeat and HEART FAILURE may occur. That's why it's VERY important to get treated! To learn more about hypertension, take a look at OTHER videos in this series!More »
Last Modified: 2012-10-31 | Tags »
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