Your chance of developing high blood pressure increases with age. In fact, people who do not have high blood pressure at age 55 face a 90 percent chance of developing it during their lifetimes. Keep your numbers out of the danger zone using the following prevention and treatment strategies.
Every single time your heart beats, it pumps blood throughout the arteries in your body. Blood pressure is the force of blood pushing against the walls of those arteries. Blood pressure changes throughout the day. It’s usually lowest when you are sleeping, and increases when you wake. It increases too when you are excited, nervous, or active.
The pressure of blood against the artery walls when your heart beats is called systolic pressure. The pressure between beats when your heart relaxes is called diastolic pressure. These two measurements are recorded in a blood pressure reading, one number on top of the other such as 120 over 80.
So why is it important to know your blood pressure reading? Blood pressure is one of the most important measurements of heart health. Blood pressure that remains abnormally high over an extended period of time is called high blood pressure. The medical term for high blood pressure is hypertension. Your doctor might use these terms interchangeably.