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According to the Department of Health (DOH), about 12 million Filipinos are considered as hypertensive. Additionally, hypertensive heart disease, which is a complication of hypertension, ranks as 7th among the leading causes of death in the Philippines.
In order to understand why it’s such a leading cause of death, we first need to understand what is the meaning of hypertension.
Hypertension, simply put, is having blood pressure that’s higher than what is deemed healthy.
According to the WHO, if a person’s blood pressure is measured at or above 130 systolic and/or at or above 80 diastolic or at least 130 over at least 80, then that person has high blood pressure. This means that their blood is exerting more pressure on their arteries, and this can cause numerous health problems.
However, having blood pressure that is lower than that does not necessarily mean that a person’s blood pressure is within the healthy range. A blood pressure reading of systolic 120 to 129mmHg and diastolic <80mmHg or simply 120 to 129 over less than 80 can mean that a person might be prehypertensive, or that they are prone to developing hypertension later on in life.
Knowing what is the meaning of hypertension alone isn’t enough to be informed about the risks. It’s also important to know what health problems can arise from hypertension.
Now that we know what is the meaning of hypertension, we need to understand what causes hypertension in the first place.
Hypertension is the result of numerous genetic and environmental factors that have multiple effects on your cardiovascular and renal systems.
Although the exact cause of hypertension remains unclear, a number of risk factors are strongly associated with its development, such as the following:
Based on information from the World Health Organization (WHO), over 1.13 billion people worldwide have hypertension. And every year, over 7.6 million people die due to complications resulting from hypertension.
Knowing what is the meaning of hypertension can help people be more informed about this condition. It also helps them avoid risk factors that can significantly reduce their chances of being diagnosed with hypertension, especially later on in life.
Hypertension is associated with significant increase in risk of adverse cardiovascular and kidney problems. If left unaddressed, high blood pressure can lead to the following complications:
This is why it’s important to manage your blood pressure, and keep it in check in order to avoid experiencing any of these complications.
Aside from knowing what is the meaning of hypertension, as well as the risk factors, it’s crucial to know the signs that you might potentially have this condition.
According to the Department of Health (DOH), stroke, which results from hypertension, is the second most common cause of death among men, and fourth most common cause of death among women.
Being aware of the signs of hypertension helps people better manage it, and get their blood pressure under control. As hypertension is usually asymptomatic, there are potential symptoms to warn you of hypertension:
It is also possible for a person with hypertension to overlook any of these symptoms. This is why hypertension is regarded as a silent killer, since the symptoms aren’t always felt.
This is why it is important to regularly check your blood pressure in order to make sure that it is still within the healthy range or below 120/80.
Apart from knowing what is the meaning of hypertension, knowing how to prevent hypertension is very important.
Compared to other potentially life-threatening conditions, hypertension can be managed and people who have been diagnosed are able to control it even without medication.
Here are some of the ways to keep your blood pressure in check:
If you already have high blood pressure, here are some ways of how to manage and treat hypertension:
Hypertension is a major health problem not just in the Philippines, but worldwide. In fact, a large number of people with hypertension remain undiagnosed and unaware of their condition.
And aside from knowing what is the meaning of hypertension, knowing what can potentially cause it, and what you can do to manage it is very important.
This is why it would be a good idea to get your blood pressure checked to know if you might be suffering from hypertension. And even if you are still within the normal range, it would be best to make some positive lifestyle changes to start living healthier.
The risk of hypertension increases with age, so keeping healthy while you are still young is a good way to avoid having high blood pressure later on in life.
Use this calculator to check your body mass index (BMI) and find out if you're at a healthy weight. You can also use this tool to check your child's BMI.
Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.