Arterial hypertension (AH), also known as high blood pressure, is one of the most common chronic diseases. It occurs when blood moves in the arteries under greater pressure than normal. Blood pressure usually rises and falls throughout the day, but it can damage the heart and cause health problems if it stays high for a long period of time.
High blood pressure can constrict and narrow the blood vessels in the kidneys, which in turn reduces blood flow and interferes with their normal function. When this happens, the kidneys are unable to remove all the waste products and extra accumulated fluid from the body. This whole process raises the blood pressure even more, creating a dangerous cycle and causing more damage leading to kidney failure.
Arterial hypertension is of two types – primary and secondary.
Primary hypertension, also called essential hypertension, covers the greater percentage of hypertensives. The factors that lead to its appearance can be many and varied from stress, obesity, smoking, sedentary lifestyle, consumption of larger quantities of cooking salt, coffee, alcohol, genetic predisposition.
Unlike the previous one, secondary hypertension occurs as a symptom of another concomitant disease. It is also called symptomatic hypertension and develops most often in renal or endocrine diseases.
Controlling high blood pressure is important for overall health.
Here are some important steps that can be followed:
- A healthy, low-salt diet
- Regular physical activity
- Stress management
- Quitting smoking
- Maintaining a healthy weight
- Limiting caffeine and alcohol intake
- Administration of prescribed medication as needed