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High blood pressure (hypertension) is common in adults and can lead to serious health complications if left untreated. Hypertension is more common in black adults and affects about one in four American adults. Treatment for hypertension generally involves controlling high blood pressure and getting to and maintaining normal blood pressure at all times. Other options to treat high blood pressure include taking drug therapy, eating a healthier diet, and making changes to your lifestyle.

There are several risk factors for high blood pressure. These include being overweight or obese, long-term use of tobacco products including cigars and cigarettes, being over the age of 50 years, having hypertension within the past year, and having kidney or liver disease. These factors are determined by your specific risk factors from your medical history and certain laboratory tests. You can learn more about the risk factors for hypertension and to control them through diet, exercise, medications, and lifestyle changes at your doctor’s office. Blood pressure that is high can lead to serious health complications including heart disease and stroke. If you have hypertension, you need to talk to your doctor to find out the different ways you can lower your blood pressure so you can avoid serious health risks.

The most common medicine for high blood pressure option is prescription medications. Some of these medications include hypertension management drugs such as atenolol (Imodium), diuretics such as niacin (Citrus Force), furosemide (Lasix), and ventricular fibrillation agents including atenolol, prilosec (Puricare), and netilmyristoleate (Prevacid). Your primary care physician will discuss your options for treatment and make a recommended treatment regimen for you. These medications are often used to control severe hypertension. Sometimes, low-dose diuretics are combined with other drugs to improve the response to therapy. If your high blood pressure is caused by smoking, quitting can also help reduce it.

Sometimes, a patient may only need to reduce their daily exercise in order to lower their high blood pressure. This includes limiting their exposure to car exhaust and tobacco smoke. Lifestyle changes, such as increasing the amount of time spent in physical activity and avoiding alcohol and other beverages can also help. Smoking reduces the body’s ability to produce and use endorphins which are the body’s natural pain killers and are believed to contribute to hypertension. Exercising regularly helps your body maintain healthy blood pressures and regular exercise helps strengthen your bones and muscle tissues.

Some patients experience milder forms of high blood pressure and do not require medication. In these cases, lifestyle changes such as maintaining a healthy weight and avoiding long-term tobacco use, exercise, and weight gain can often provide immediate relief. Lifestyle changes that include avoiding fried foods, caffeine, excess salt, and foods that are high in saturated fat are also recommended. Smoking cessation and weight management are also encouraged. If diet and exercise do not alleviate the high blood pressure symptoms, over-the-counter or prescription medication may be prescribed in addition to lifestyle improvements.

There are many other forms of high blood pressure treatment including invasive measures. Hypertension surgery, for example, is often recommended if drastic lifestyle changes do not improve the patient’s condition. During surgery, doctors can remove excess fluid from the artery walls to reduce blood volume and force the heart to pump more effectively. If left untreated, this can lead to coronary artery disease, heart failure, or even stroke.

Alternative methods of high blood pressure treatment include everything from eating healthier to taking herbal supplements to see a chiropractor or massage therapist. The first two options seem easier, although some patients may not find the benefit of going to therapy. Chances are, the least expensive and most convenient option will be to take prescription medication. In addition, if you are already taking prescription drugs, you should consult with your doctor before adding any news to avoid possible interactions.

To make sure you’re getting the high blood pressure treatment you need, it’s important to understand your symptoms and what they mean. Being able to spot important changes in your blood pressure can help determine the best course of action. As soon as you start to experience symptoms, talk to your doctor. It’s better to err on the side of caution than to make a health problem worse. High blood pressure treatments can be simple and affordable, so don’t hesitate to get started!

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