Causes of Sudden High Blood Pressure

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causes of sudden high blood pressure

Hypertension occurs when blood exerts too much pressure on artery walls. Over time, untreated hypertension damages blood vessels and organs.

High blood pressure can damage heart disease, kidney failure and stroke, so those living with high blood pressure should take prescribed medication while making lifestyle adjustments to control it.

1. Change in Diet

Over 90 percent of cases involving high blood pressure cannot be traced back to any specific source. This condition, called essential hypertension, usually develops gradually over years. However, occasionally some individuals can experience sudden spikes in their blood pressure which must be treated immediately in order to avoid stroke, heart attack, or kidney failure resulting from sudden spikes. Some foods which could increase your blood pressure include salty, processed or canned items.

Diets that are low in sodium can help you prevent sudden high blood pressure. Avoid eating foods high in salt, using other spices instead, eating lots of fruits and vegetables while decreasing your meat and fat consumption. A regular exercise routine is another great way to lower blood pressure while staying healthy.

Hypertension is known as “the silent killer”, as its symptoms typically don’t manifest until its severity has reached critical levels. To detect whether you have hypertension, visit your GP for a routine medical checkup and get your blood pressure tested.

If you suffer from hypertension, your doctor will likely prescribe medication to address it. Diuretics typically help your kidneys eliminate sodium and water through urine output to lower blood volume; central-acting agents may also be given in certain instances to stop your brain telling your body to increase heart rate or constrict vessels.

Take your prescribed medicines as directed and check your blood pressure frequently at home. Checking blood pressure regularly can detect serious medical problems like vascular rupture, artery stenosis, cerebral hemorrhage and heart failure. In addition, exercise regularly, consume a balanced diet with no excesses such as alcohol or smoking and aim to minimize stress in your life.

2. Excessive Alcohol Consumption

Alcohol may be enjoyed socially on occasion, but excessive alcohol intake can quickly raise blood pressure to dangerously high levels and cause headaches, fatigue, vision disturbances, breathlessness, chest pain and pounding in your chest – among many other symptoms.

If you experience these symptoms, it is imperative that you contact your physician immediately for an examination of your blood pressure. They may suggest stopping drinking alcohol altogether and adopting healthier lifestyle practices to keep it under control.

Heavy alcohol use can trigger your body to produce adrenaline, which then tightens heart and blood vessels resulting in elevated blood pressure. Furthermore, alcohol hinders relaxation techniques which further raise your blood pressure. In addition, prolonged alcohol abuse may overwork kidneys leading to dehydration causing overworked kidneys that fail and permanent damage of blood vessels resulting in kidney failure or irreparable harm.

Binge drinking increases your risk of high blood pressure and other diseases of the cardiovascular system (which includes your heart, blood vessels, arteries, capillaries and veins). According to the Department of Health, men who consume eight units or more per day double their risk for coronary heart disease while women face 1.3x increased risks.

Over time, heavy drinking can lead to heart enlargement and subsequent difficulty pumping blood efficiently – potentially leading to stroke or heart failure. Alcohol also interferes with your immune system, making it harder to fight infections such as the common cold.

Other substances that can raise blood pressure include certain medications and herbal supplements like ginseng, licorice root extract and ephedra. Cold remedies, narcotics, sedatives and birth control pills may also contribute to increased hypertension levels if taken excessively.

3. Smoking

Hypertension, often referred to as the silent killer, can damage blood vessels and organs over time if left untreated. It increases risk for heart disease, glaucoma, stroke and kidney failure but is one of the most manageable aspects of these conditions – doctors often use lifestyle changes and medication treatments as ways of keeping hypertension under control.

Essential or primary hypertension typically develops over a long period of time without producing any symptoms, with most people only becoming aware they have it when it has reached dangerously high levels. Regular home or doctor-monitored blood pressure readings usually reveal this dangerously elevated blood pressure reading – typically one over 120/80 mm Hg.

Smoking cigarettes or chewing tobacco can dramatically raise your blood pressure due to chemicals present in tobacco’s ingredients that damage arterial walls, narrowing them and raising blood pressure as a result. Even secondhand smoke has similar chemical effects which increase blood pressure.

An inactive lifestyle can also elevate blood pressure because your heart and arteries must work harder to pump blood when you’re sitting still. Furthermore, inactive people typically have higher cholesterol levels and are more likely to be overweight than active individuals.

Consuming too much salt (sodium) can significantly raise blood pressure because it causes your body to retain fluid, so it is crucial that food labels contain information on low sodium foods. Furthermore, eating plenty of potassium-rich foods, like bananas and avocados can also help decrease sodium consumption.

Malignant hypertension, caused by certain medical conditions and medications, should also prompt immediate action to lower your blood pressure. Malignant hypertension has the potential to damage kidneys, arteries and the brain as well as lead to kidney failure and potentially life-threatening aneurysms of the aorta; kidneys cannot handle extra strain on their blood vessels and begin deforming, with weakening and bulging aneurysms forming which could rupture over time if left untreated.

4. Discontinuing Medicine

High blood pressure (hypertension) is a widespread medical condition with potentially life-threatening implications, often known as “the silent killer.” Unfortunately, symptoms of uncontrolled hypertension often only become evident once it reaches a life-threatening stage; so it is vitally important that we regularly check and comply with advice given by healthcare providers in regards to our blood pressure monitoring regimes.

An unexpected increase in blood pressure should be treated as a medical emergency and needs urgent medical intervention. Signs and symptoms of hypertensive crisis include severe headache, vision disturbances, fatigue, pounding in the ears, breathlessness and chest pain – in addition to possible numbness in hands and feet and difficulty speaking or understanding speech.

If a patient’s blood pressure reading exceeds 180/120 mm Hg or diastolic blood pressure exceeds 110 mm Hg, they should immediately seek hospital care and will be placed under observation while receiving intravenous (IV) drugs to lower their blood pressure levels.

One of the leading causes of sudden high blood pressure is discontinuing or abruptly tapering down medications prescribed by your physician. Therefore, it is advisable to keep track of all your medication and bring it with you whenever visiting a physician, or at least show him/her a list. Furthermore, do not increase or decrease dosage without first consulting with your physician as this could cause drops in blood pressure which lead to angina pectoris and renal failure.

Resistant hypertension occurs when blood pressure remains consistently elevated despite following healthy lifestyle habits and taking medication as prescribed, even though you have taken steps to lower it. Resistant hypertension is more dangerous than primary hypertension because it significantly increases heart disease risk. Common causes for resistant hypertension may include kidney issues like polycystic kidney disease, glomerular diseases or renovascular hypertension; use of certain drugs such as Clonidine (Catapres), Guanfacine (Intuniv) or Methyldopa; or adrenal gland disorders like aldosteronism or Pheochromocytoma.

About the Author:
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Alexander Suprun

Alex started his first web marketing campaign in 1997 and continues harvesting this fruitful field today. He helped many startups and well-established companies to grow to the next level by applying innovative inbound marketing strategies. For the past 26 years, Alex has served over a hundred clients worldwide in all aspects of digital marketing and communications. Additionally, Alex is an expert researcher in healthcare, vision, macular degeneration, natural therapy, and microcurrent devices. His passion lies in developing medical devices to combat various ailments, showcasing his commitment to innovation in healthcare.


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