High Blood Pressure
What's the big deal with high blood pressure anyway? Most people probably feel fine. No harm in your blood pressure being a little high, right? Well my friends, high blood pressure, also known as hypertension, is one hell of a disease. It can cause many problems in your body and even lead to death. But before we get into all that, let's find out what a blood pressure is and what it means to have high blood pressure.
what happens in your body so you have a blood pressure...
When the heart beats, it pumps blood, with oxygen and nutrients, to the arteries. Arteries are muscular tubes in the body that transport blood from the heart to the cells and organs in the body. The force of the blood pushing against the artery walls is the blood pressure and what is measure when your blood pressure is taken. Arteries can control the pressure of the blood by opening (relaxing) or closing (constricting) the walls. Imagine squeezing a straw with your teeth and releasing - the more you squeeze on the straw, the harder it is for the liquid to get out. This is the similar action of the artery walls. As the arteries become smaller and close, the blood pressure becomes higher. As the arteries become wider and open, the blood pressure becomes lower.
Why is it so dangerous
Our heart beats on average, about 60-100 times per minute. That's 60-100 times per minute that the arteries are opening and closing controlling blood pressure. When blood pressure is high, it affects the ability of the arteries to open and close. Since the walls of our arteries are muscles, if our blood pressure remains high, the artery walls respond by constricting. This makes the muscles in the arteries grow larger. Like with any muscle in our body, the harder it works, the bigger it gets. Just like lifting weights. The bigger the artery grows to help control the blood flow, the less space. This actually makes blood pressure higher. Makes sense? If the arteries are damaged, the heart works harder to get blood to other places throughout the body and the arteries work harder to control the blood pressure.
Little recap: The heart pumps blood > blood goes to arteries> blood pressure too high> arteries get smaller>blood pressure remains high>arteries grow thicker from overworking> space becomes smaller for blood to flow> blood pressure remains high.
Got it? Great!
High blood pressure is commonly known as the "silent killer". Why you ask? Because there are no true symptoms of the disease. For most people, high blood pressure happens over many years and it can be hard to pinpoint the exact cause. Knowing your average blood pressure numbers is good way to track changes that may occur over time.
The exact cause of high blood pressure is actually unknown. But there are many risks that have been found to increase the chances of getting high blood pressure.