High blood pressure is called a silent killer not without a reason. Most of the time, there are no noticeable signs of hypertension and even if you have some symptoms, you may not immediately act upon it dismissing it as routine tiredness, work pressure, or exertion. Ignoring BP issues can however prove deadly and in worst cases, it can cause a heart attack, heart failure, aneurysm, stroke, memory problems, or dementia. Monitoring blood pressure regularly is the key to evading the risk of serious illnesses.
Around 1.13 billion people worldwide suffer from hypertension and the condition is more common in men than women. However, only 1 people in 5 have it in control while others still face the risk of developing complications from it. The incidences of hypertension have seen a sharp rise across the world and while earlier it was common in the older age groups, now we get to see many new cases of young people with hypertension.
“We should not ignore some of the common symptoms of high blood pressure like severe headache, blurring vision, breathing difficulty, especially breathlessness on exertion, chest discomfort, and easy fatigability. High blood pressure can affect your health and cause serious complications if it is left untreated,” says Dr. Rajesh Budhiraja.
3. Fatigue: Are you unable to do your office work or household chores with ease then this can be due to high blood pressure. Feeling exhausted even after doing nothing? Try to reach your treating doctor for further evaluation.
4. Shortness of breath: One may also have difficulty breathing when his/her blood pressure is high. This is one of the common symptoms of hypertension.
5. Blurred vision: Untreated hypertension can alter one’s vision. Thus, one will encounter vision problems. His or her vision will be blurred.
“One more sign of hypertension is blurring of vision or developing black spots in your visual field or sudden complete loss of vision are the symptoms which should be taken seriously,” says Dr. Savla.
6. Chest pain: It is seen when one’s blood pressure is high. Try to take immediate treatment after you notice these symptoms. Ignoring these symptoms can lead to serious complications in later life.
Can high blood pressure land you in ICU?
“Hypertension can have a disastrous effect on the heart resulting in the hardening and thickening of the heart arteries thereby, causing the heart to receive less blood supply, in worst cases, it can cause a heart attack besides other life-threatening conditions brought about by affecting other organs,” says Dr. Budhiraja.
“Patients with high blood pressure may also develop chest pain and restlessness and some may develop myocardial infarction i.e. heart attack as a result of long uncontrolled hypertension. There is a serious condition called hypertensive heart failure which may present as low oxygen levels, difficulty in sleeping due to breathlessness (due to water-filled lungs) along with swelling over the legs and chest pain patients if not treated on time, will end up in ICU. Epistaxis i.e. bleeding from the nose can occur as a serious complication of high blood pressure and may also call for urgent ICU admission. Hence it is best to do regular health check-ups, get diagnosed on time, and treated as soon as possible,” says Dr. Savla.
If you are suffering from high blood pressure, there is plenty that you can do on a day-to-day basis to keep it in check.
– You can begin with a healthy diet followed by maintaining a healthy weight, being more active, and staying away from smoking and alcohol.
– In addition, tweaking other daily habits can go a long way to help keep your readings in check.
Dr. Honey Savla,
Consultant – Internal Medicine
Wockhardt Hospital, Mumbai Central
To book an appointment call: +918291101001