Hypertension And Its Associated Risk Factors
Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is a condition in which the force of your blood against the walls of your arteries is high enough to cause health problems. If left untreated, hypertension can lead to serious health problems, including heart disease, stroke, and kidney failure. Even if you don't have hypertension, you may be at risk for developing it. That's because there are often no symptoms associated with high blood pressure, so you may not know you have it until it's too late. Over time, if untreated, hypertension can lead to serious health problems, like heart disease, stroke, and kidney failure.
Hypertension is often called the “silent killer” because it usually has no symptoms. In fact, many people don’t even know they have it. That’s why it’s important to get your blood pressure checked regularly, starting at age 18.
According to the American Heart Association (AHA), more than 100 million Americans have high blood pressure, but only about half of them have their condition under control. If you have hypertension, there are things you can do to lower your blood pressure and reduce your risk of related health problems.
There are a number of factors that can increase your risk for developing hypertension.
Age: The older you are, the greater your risk for hypertension.
Family history: If your parents or other close relatives have hypertension, you're more likely to develop it as well.
Race: African Americans are at greater risk for developing hypertension than other groups.
Gender: Women are more likely to develop hypertension than men.
Obesity: If you're overweight or obese, you're more likely to develop hypertension.
Lack of physical activity: People who don't get enough exercise are more likely to develop hypertension.
Smoking: Smoking cigarettes is a major risk factor for hypertension.
Too much salt in your diet: Eating foods that are high in salt can raise your blood pressure.
Stress: Long-term stress can lead to hypertension.
Too much alcohol: Drinking too much alcohol can raise your blood pressure.
If you're concerned about your risk for hypertension, there are some things you can do to lower it. First, it's important to understand the risk factors for hypertension.