The ONE organ responsible for high blood pressure.
Important facts that you need to know when measuring your blood pressure
What do blood pressure numbers mean? The only way to know if you have high blood pressure (HBP, or hypertension) is to undergo a blood pressure test. Understanding the results is the key to controlling hypertension. Blood pressure categories The American Heart Association distinguishes five ranges of blood pressure: Normal Blood pressure below 120/80 mm Hg is considered normal. If your results fall within this range, stick to heart-healthy habits such as eating a balanced diet and exercising regularly. Elevated Elevated blood pressure occurs when readings consistently fall within the range of 120-129 systolic and less than 80 mm Hg diastolic. People with elevated blood pressure are at risk of developing hypertension unless they take steps to control the condition. Stage 1 hypertension Stage 1 hypertension is a condition in which blood pressure consistently fluctuates between 130-139 mm systolic or 80-89 mm Hg diastolic. At this stage of hypertension, doctors are likely to recommend lifestyle changes and may consider adding blood pressure medication depending on the risk of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD), such as heart attack or stroke. Stage 2 hypertension Stage 2 hypertension occurs when blood pressure is consistently 140/90 mm Hg or higher. At this stage of hypertension, doctors are likely to prescribe a combination of blood pressure medications and lifestyle changes. Hypertensive crisis This stage of hypertension requires medical attention. If your blood pressure suddenly exceeds 180/120 mm Hg, wait five minutes and then check your blood pressure again. If the readings are still unusually high, contact your doctor immediately. This could be a hypertensive crisis. If your blood pressure is higher than 180/120 mm Hg and you are experiencing signs of possible organ damage, such as chest pain, shortness of breath, back pain, numbness/weakness, changes in vision or difficulty speaking, do not wait for your blood pressure to drop on its own. Call 911. What does the systolic blood pressure number mean? When the heart beats, it squeezes and pushes blood through the arteries to the rest of the body. This force puts pressure on the blood vessels and this is your systolic blood pressure. Here's how to understand the value of systolic blood pressure: Normal: Below 120 Elevated: 120-129 Stage 1 high blood pressure (also called hypertension): 130-139 Stage 2 hypertension: 140 or more Hypertensive crisis: 180 or more. Call 911. What does the diastolic blood pressure number mean? Diastolic blood pressure, or the lower number, is the pressure in the arteries when the heart is resting between beats. This is the time when the heart fills with blood and receives oxygen. Here's what the diastolic blood pressure number means: Normal: Lower than 80 Grade 1 hypertension: 80-89 Grade 2 hypertension: 90 or more Hypertensive crisis: 120 or more. Call 911. How can I check my blood pressure? How to measure your blood pressure at home using a home blood pressure monitor
- Follow the instructions that come with the blood pressure monitor
- Place the cuff on your arm just above the elbow
- Remain calm and quiet while taking the measurement
- Take two or three measurements, each about one to two minutes apart
- Record your measurements.