Student No. 22282118
How to Lower High Blood Pressure
American Intercontinental University
High blood pressure can lead to other health problems if it goes uncontrolled. This article explains what blood pressure is in order to offer an understanding of high blood pressure. The long-term detrimental effects of high blood pressure or “hypertension” are discussed. Ways to lowering blood pressure are offered from a nurse’s perspective and experience along with suggested lifestyle changes.
Keywords: blood pressure, systolic, diastolic, hypertension, smoking, overweight, anti-hypertensives, BMI
What is Blood ...view middle of the document...
” writes Gina Shaw of Webmd.com.
A reading above 140/90 and above is considered severe hypertension. People with readings at this range are four times at risk of heart attack or stroke. (Shaw, n.d.)
Effects of High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)
As mentioned above, high blood pressure can ultimately lead to heart attack or stroke. There are other consequences of untreated high blood pressure. High blood pressure can cause:
* Kidney damage and other organs from decreased blood flow
* Glaucoma from increased eye pressure
* Narrowing, hardening or weakening of the arteries, otherwise known as atherosclerosis or arteriosclerosis (arteries lose their elasticity from hypertension)
* Aneurysms occurs when the blood breaks through the weak or hardened arteries
* Heart failure occurs when the heart enlarges due to increased workload
* A stroke takes place when there is a break in the arteries that lead to the brain
* Blood flow to the heart can be blocked leading to a heart attack as oxygen to the heart is deprived
How to Lower and Control Blood Pressure
There are many things one can do to lower blood pressure. These are classified in two categories; Lifestyle changes and medications. Pre-hypertension is generally controlled with lifestyle changes. It would be wrong to say that lifestyle changes would be easy; but it’s not impossible. Yes, bad habits are hard to break but the benefits are rewarding.
1. Lose weight. If you’re overweight, lose weight and keep it under control. To determine if you’re overweight; calculate your BMI (Body Mass Index). According to the National Heart, Blood and Lung Institute (NHLBI), measuring your BMI will give an approximation of body fat. “Overweight is defined as a BMI of 25 to 29.9; obesity is defined as a BMI equal to or more than 30.” (NHLBI, n.d.) You can calculate your BMI here http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/guidelines/obesity/BMI/bmicalc.htm. This source is maintained by U.S. Department of Health & Human Services.
2. If you determine that you are overweight, start an exercise regimen. Living a sedimentary lifestyle will contribute to high blood pressure, so exercise is a good way to start. You can combine aerobic exercise with strength exercise or try yoga. Dr. Debbie Cohen reported, “Yoga is effective in reducing high blood pressure.” (Nordqvist, 2013)
3. Limit salt. Do not add salt to any of your meals. Read labels and take note of the “sodium” in your food. Salt or sodium increases pressure by increasing the shift of fluid within the cells from an area of lower concentration to an area of higher concentration. A process called osmosis.
4. Quit Smoking. Smoking damages the arterial walls’ elasticity causing...