High blood pressure often goes untreated. It doesn’t really cause any symptoms until something serious happens. High blood pressure can lead to a stroke, heart disease, and heart failure.
Getting your blood pressure checked regularly is something you can and should do for yourself. You can book an appointment with your doctor, or you can monitor your blood pressure at self-serve stations located in most pharmacies. Your blood pressure reading should fall between the normal range listed – usually at or below 120/80 (systolic/diastolic).
If you are over the age of 35, or if you or your family have a history of high blood pressure or heart or kidney problems, you should monitor your blood pressure.
Anyone can develop high blood pressure. There are many things that can raise your blood pressure. Just being over the age of 55 increases your risk for this condition. Men are more likely to develop high blood pressure, as are African Americans. Smoking increases your risk, as does an inactive lifestyle with little or no exercise. Being overweight can lead to blood pressure readings that are higher than normal.