High blood pressure is a serious and preventable condition. Every February, Americans are reminded to have their blood pressure checked because it is American Heart Month. You can have your heart checked anytime of the year, but designating a month has served as not only a reminder but as a notice that your health is important and that includes a healthy heart. Particularly important as you age because blood pressure raises as you get older.
Approximately 33% of American adults have high blood pressure, reports the American Heart Association. Little more than half of those cases have their high blood pressure under control. And that’s just the reported cases. So many people go undiagnosed. And, if left untreated, high blood pressure can damage blood vessels, your heart and even kidneys and it all can lead to coronary heart disease, stroke and heart failure, among other conditions.
Usually, there are no symptoms of high blood pressure, which is why many people don’t discover they have it. You should have your blood pressure taken at your physician’s office and find out early if you need treatment.
What is high blood pressure?
A “normal” range of blood pressure usually is less than 120 for the top number (systolic) and less than 80 for the bottom number (diastolic). If your systolic number is more than 140 or your diastolic is higher than 99, you have high blood pressure and may need to start immediate treatment according to your doctor.
Despite all of the bad news, there is good. High blood pressure is not only treatable but preventable, too. Here are ways to keep your blood pressure in check.
High blood pressure may occur as you age, but with a little prevention you can control your future health.