An estimated 75 million Americans have hypertension, but they may not even know it. Also referred to as high blood pressure, hypertension can lead to serious health problems if left untreated. Internal medicine physician Dr. Janet Sanchez treats patients with this common condition at her office in Elmhurst, New York. With the right medication and lifestyle changes, hypertension can be managed and even eliminated.
Hypertension occurs when your blood pressure rises to an unhealthy level. Your blood pressure reading reveals how quickly blood is passing through your veins and how much resistance it encounters. With hypertension, your arteries can become more narrow, which increases this resistance.
There are two main types of hypertension:
Primary hypertension develops over a period and lacks an apparent, identifiable cause. Several factors may contribute to this condition, including genetics or lifestyle choices.
Secondary hypertension happens more quickly and can cause more severe complications than primary hypertension. Factors that may contribute to the development of secondary hypertension include:
Diagnosing hypertension can be difficult because most people don’t experience any symptoms. If they do, the symptoms are vague and may be attributable to other conditions or health problems. Symptoms that might show arise from hypertension include:
You might also experience flushing, nosebleeds, or blood in your urine.
Hypertension is normal during times of stress, but it can become problematic if it’s left untreated for an extended period.
Since you may not experience any symptoms, it’s important to get regular blood pressure readings. Dr. Sanchez performs these readings during your routine exams, or you can request a separate appointment to discuss your blood pressure.
Treatment for hypertension might include taking certain medications, improving your diet, and losing weight. Dr. Sanchez can help monitor your blood pressure over time to determine what might be causing elevated levels and whether or not you have an underlying condition that requires treatment.
To continue checking your blood pressure at home, you can purchase a self-monitoring device. You can alleviate hypertension by learning how to manage stress healthily.
If you think you might have a hypertension problem, call for an appointment with Dr. Sanchez today.