Is High Blood Pressure Always A Silent Killer?

Usually, there are no physical symptoms of high blood pressure until it's too late. Major organ damage can occur if high blood pressure is not treated for a period of time, and sadly, this condition cannot be reversed. The only way to be sure you don't have high blood pressure is to take regular readings, even if you don't have any physical symptoms. With high blood pressure, the time to act is now.

What Is High Blood Pressure?

High blood pressure is also called hypertension and is usually divided into four stages: mild, moderate, severe and very severe. This condition is caused when the arteries are narrowed or weakened by plaque build-up or other diseases affect the circulatory system. Because the arteries are smaller than they should be, it makes it more difficult for the heart to pump the blood through them. The first number in a blood pressure reading measures the amount of pressure, or force, the heart exerts to push the blood through the arteries. If the arteries are narrow, the heart must use a lot more force than normal to pump the blood. The second number of the blood pressure reading measures the heart at rest. This number is very important because if it goes too high, it means the heart is not able to receive the necessary rest it needs between beats.

Physical Symptoms of High Blood Pressure

Although you should never rely on physical symptoms to alert you to high blood pressure, many patients who have this condition also experience several of the following signs. It should also be noted that these physical symptoms may also be related to other conditions, and not confined to high blood pressure only. Headaches, dizziness or blurred vision will usually make a person visit a physician, and many times high blood pressure may be diagnosed. If high blood pressure if not treated there can be heart and kidney damage present in the body. Therefore, anemia may signal the presence of high blood pressure, because of a decrease in red blood cell production. Asthma and diabetes may also be warning signs of elevated blood pressure, and these conditions must be adequately treated before the blood pressure returns to a safer level. It's believed that one of the main physical symptoms of high blood pressure is frequent nosebleeds, although this may also signal other medical problems.

Since high blood pressure doesn't announce its presence with solid and certain physical symptoms, it's up to you to monitor your blood pressure readings and discuss any abnormalities with your doctor.