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5 myths about high blood pressure

Debunking 5 myths about high blood pressure By Dr. Hector Lopez D.O. 

1) High blood pressure isn’t a big deal Yes it is. In many cases, those who have this problem don’t notice any symptoms to be concerned about, but high blood pressure can lead to death. High blood pressure damages artery plasticity and causes blood to have problems circulating. The heart, kidneys and other organs in the body can be severely affected by high blood pressure. 

2) High blood pressure can’t be prevented Yes it can be prevented. A person might have higher risk of developing high blood pressure because of family history or other factors such as race, but with a healthy diet, limiting salt consumption, alcohol intake, avoiding smoking (even second-hand smoking), plus adding some form of physical activity, high blood pressure can be prevented.
3) It’s ok to have high blood pressure if one number is normal No. There are 2 number to be considered, one written on top of the other. The top number is called systolic blood pressure. This number represents the force of blood through your blood vessels during your heartbeat. The second number is called diastolic blood pressure. When it comes to systolic blood pressure, a reading of 119 or below is normal, 120-129 is considered elevated and 130 and greater is high blood pressure. When it comes to diastolic blood pressure, 79 or below is normal diastolic blood pressure, above 80 means the person has hypertension. Both numbers must be normal. 

4) There is a specific treatment to deal with high blood pressure No. Many people think that to treat high blood pressure they will have to give up their favorite treats and take medicines that might bring them side effects, but the true is that there are several elements a doctor will consider when developing a treatment. Among those, there must be a diet plan to stop hypertension (also known as DASH), weigh control, cut smoking and use medications such as alpha and beta blockers, ACE inhibitors and calcium channel blocker. The idea is to slow the heart rate to decrease blood pressure. 

5) Treatments don’t really work Again, no. If the person suffering from high blood pressure works closely with the doctor and follows an adequate plan, treatment will work. People must always remember to see the doctor as often as requested and ask all the questions needed to be more proactive towards controlling the problem.

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