According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there are around 70 million adults in the U.S. that suffer from high blood pressure. Unfortunately, this is a condition that can have serious health effects if it is not treated and kept under control. High blood pressure tends to affect people that are older more so than younger people; however, anyone can develop this condition. If you have not been to a doctor recently to have your blood pressure checked, you should go, and here are three things you should understand about this.

(Not) Knowing You Have It

In many cases, people who suffer from high blood pressure do not even realize they have it. This condition often has no symptoms that a person will really notice, which is why it is called the "silent killer." While high blood pressure is not limited to certain types of people, there are certain risk factors that can give you a higher chance of developing this problem. Here are some of the risk factors to consider:

  • Hereditary – If your parents suffered from high blood pressure, you might be at a higher risk for it. This condition tends to be hereditary in nature.
  • Age – High blood pressure is not limited to a certain age group either, but it tends to be more of a problem for people who are 45 years old or older
  • Obesity – People that are overweight or obese are also at a higher risk for developing this condition.
  • Smokers – People who use nicotine may also have a greater chance of developing this problem.

If you fall into one or more of these categories, you should get your blood pressure checked on a regular basis.

Effects It Can Have on Your Body

The reason this is so important is because high blood pressure can have a lot of negative effects on the body, and the heart is the main organ affected by this. When your blood pressure is higher than it should be, it causes the heart to pump harder and faster than normal. This puts stress on the heart that should not be there, and this can cause your heart to develop problems.

This stress can end up causing damage to your heart and to the blood vessels in your body. If left unaddressed, high blood pressure can lead to the development of heart disease, or you could have a heart attack or stroke. High blood pressure can also lead to kidney problems and many other health issues.

Ways to Lower It

If your doctor discovers that you suffer from high blood pressure, he or she is likely to give you medication designed to lower it. This can help tremendously and reduce your risks, but there are also things you can do that will naturally help you lower your blood pressure.

One of the best things to do is lose weight. Losing weight will relieve some of the stress placed on your heart, and this will make your heart healthier. In addition, losing weight through exercising will also help your heart simply because exercise is vital for health heart. You may also need to make some lifestyle changes in order to solve this issue. For example, if you smoke, you should stop. You should also try eating healthier and avoiding foods that are fatty and high in cholesterol.

High blood pressure is not something you should ignore. Instead, visit a doctor to find out how your blood pressure is so that you can treat it if it is high. To learn more, schedule an appointment with a medical clinic such as Summit View Clinic today so that you can start living a healthier life.