More than 100 million Americans have high blood pressure. Understand your risk!

Nearly half of American adults suffer from high blood pressure, and many of them don’t even know it. High blood pressure is sometimes referred to as the silent killer. In many cases, people who have high blood pressure don’t experience any obvious signs or symptoms to alert them that anything is wrong. For this reason, many people with high blood pressure aren’t even aware they have it.

High blood pressure has several different causes and develops gradually over time. High blood pressure damages the circulatory system and increases one’s risk of heart attack, stroke, and other medical problems. Although there is no cure for high blood pressure, the condition can be managed through lifestyle changes and, if necessary, medication. The best way to protect yourself from the dangers of high blood pressure is to educate yourself about the risks and make lifestyle changes to improve your heart health.

It’s a good idea to have your blood pressure checked on a regular basis. Normal blood pressure is less than 120/80 mm Hg. Blood pressure between 120-129/80 is considered elevated. High blood pressure (hypertension stage one) is 130-139/80-89. Hypertension stage two is 140 or higher over 90 or higher. A hypertensive crisis is a medical emergency where blood pressure is higher than 180 over 120.