Interested in learning about hypertension, but not sure where to start? We’ve got you covered.
What is blood pressure?
Blood pressure is the amount of force the blood imposes on the blood vessels as it travels through the body. Some pressure is natural and necessary to get blood pumped around the body!
What is hypertension?
Hypertension (abbreviated HTN) and high blood pressure (abbreviated HBP), occur when a person’s blood pressure consistently measures above certain recommended levels.
Below is a table that shows various blood pressure readings and their corresponding categories:
*High blood pressure can only be diagnosed by a medical professional.
Contact your doctor if you are concerned about your blood pressure.
High blood pressure or hypertension is more common than one might think. Nearly half of all Americans have high blood pressure, and don’t even know it.
Why know my blood pressure?
The only way to know a person’s blood pressure is by measuring it. Most people with high blood pressure do not experience day-to-day symptoms. This is why high blood pressure known as a “silent killer.” When left untreated, high blood pressure can do significant damage to the circulatory system and blood vessels, which can contribute to heart attack, stroke, and more.
What causes high blood pressure?
Multiple factors can be at play such as diet, lifestyle, and genetics.
Regardless of the cause, keeping blood pressure in check involves a multi-faceted approach that can include diet, physical activity, stress reduction, sleep, medication, and more. Many lifestyle factors interact when health and blood pressure are concerned.
How can I improve my blood pressure?
Want to learn more about how your daily choices impact health and blood pressure? Want to collect your meaningful health data all in one place so you can see what’s working and what’s not, and track your progress towards better health? The Brook app lets you do all of this, and more. The app also gives you access to Brook’s Experts, who are there every day to answer questions and give you feedback on your personal health journey as they arise.
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P.S. for more content, Check out this YouTube video that helps explain what blood pressure is, how it works, and what happens when blood pressure is too high. You can also check out this page on the American Heart Association’s website for the truth regarding a few myths about hypertension.
Reviewed by Emily Matson, MS, RDN
on February 18, 2020. Emily is a Registered Dietitian with her Master's degree in Nutrition from Bastyr University in Kenmore, WA, and is one of our Brook Experts.