High Blood Pressure

Do we actually know what high blood pressure is? Many of us are aware of the dangers of having high blood pressure but do we actually understand what it means?

Blood pressure is the pressure of blood in the arteries as it is being pumped around the body by the heart. When your blood pressure exceeds an upper limit for an extended time, you have high blood pressure also known as hypertension.

In adults high blood pressure is defined as systolic pressure and/or a diastolic pressure however to get a true picture it may be worth getting your blood pressure measured more than a single time because stress, particularly when you visit the doctor can cause it to rise.

The dangers of high BP

Because the heart, brain and kidneys can withstand increased blood pressure for long periods, people with high blood pressure may feel perfectly well for many years. However, this doesn’t mean that it isn’t doing damage. If it is not controlled, high blood pressure can overload the heart, accelerate the artery clogging process And this in turn can lead to heart attack, stroke, heart failure or kidney failure.

Checking your blood pressure

It is recommended that all adults should have their blood pressure checked once every 1 to 2 years, although anyone with past or present high blood pressure, or a direct family history of it, should have it checked more often.

Adults who experience symptoms of hypertension such a swollen ankles and fingers, breathlessness, blurred vision, frequent bleeding nose and persistent morning headaches, should have the blood pressure checked immediately.


While it is true that many people need drugs to control high blood pressure, others can reduce it with lifestyle changes.

A healthy diet alone maybe all that is needed to reduce blood pressure. A study in the US showed that a diet rich in fruits, vegetables and low-fat dairy foods as well as being high in fibre and protein, is sufficient to significantly reduce blood pressure in people with mild hypertension.

For anyone with more severe hypertension it is advised that along with a healthy diet they live with their alcohol and salt intake, lose weight, and exercise regularly.

If in doubt, visit your doctor.

Remember, Mayfair we care.