Dr. Gary Goff and his team of practitioners specialize in blood pressure screenings, high blood pressure testing services and hypertension prevention in the Dallas area. According to the Centers for Disease Control, high blood pressure affects 1 in 3 Americans. Also known as hypertension, high blood pressure displays no symptoms but can cause heart disease and other complications. Blood pressure is the pressure exerted on blood vessels from flowing blood. If your heart pumps more quickly, it will exert more pressure on your blood vessels.
How do I measure or test my blood pressure?
Blood pressure is measured in millimeters of mercury (mm Hg). When getting your blood pressure tested and given your blood pressure measurements, you will see two numbers. The first is systolic pressure, which is the blood pressure when your heart is beating. Diastolic pressure refers to your blood pressure when your heart is at rest between beats.
Testing for different levels of blood pressure
There are four ways to classify blood pressure. Take a look to see where you stand after your blood pressure test.
- Normal: Less than 120 systolic and less than 80 diastolic
- Prehypertension: 120-139 systolic or 80-89 diastolic
- Stage 1 Hypertension: 140-159 systolic or 90-99 diastolic
- Stage 2 Hypertension (more severe): 160 or higher systolic or 100 or higher diastolic
Risk Factors for High Blood Pressure:
- Old Age – Hypertension tends to rise with age
- Gender –Before age 45, high blood pressure is more likely to affect men than women. After age 65, hypertension is more likely to affect women.
- Certain chronic conditions including sleep apnea and kidney disease
- Diet – A diet high in sodium (salt) and low in potassium can increase your likelihood of having high blood pressure
- Family History – high blood pressure runs in families
- Being Overweight
- Inactive Lifestyle
- Tobacco Use
- Heavy Alcohol Consumption
- Chronic High Stress Levels
Complications Associated with High Blood Pressure
Although high blood pressure is most commonly associated with coronary artery disease, also known as CAD, it can lead to a number of medical problems including:
- Heart Attack or Stroke
- Heart Failure
- Kidney Failure
- Vision Loss
- Memory Trouble
One good way to prevent or delay high blood pressure is to live a healthy lifestyle. Exercise, quit smoking or chewing tobacco, monitor your weight and follow the DASH eating plan. If your blood pressure is normal (below 120/80 mm Hg), we recommend having your blood pressure tested at every regular doctor’s visit or at least every two years. For those with higher blood pressure levels, we recommend having your blood pressure monitored more frequently, as laid out in an individual health plan with Dr. Goff. Please contact Dr. Goff today if you have any questions or would like to set up an appointment.