What You Can Do To Reduce Risks For Stroke

What You Can Do To Reduce Risks For Stroke

Stroke is a condition that falls under the umbrella of heart disease. Most people don’t realize that there are three kinds of stroke and that there are things you can do to reduce your risk of all kinds of stroke.

The three major kinds of stroke include the following:

• Thrombotic stroke – This is the type of stroke in which plaques build up on the arterial walls of the arteries leading to the brain. The plaques narrow the blood vessels and clots can form in the narrowed areas, causing a reduction in oxygen and blood flow to the brain stops.

• Embolic stroke – This is the type of stroke in which there is a blood clot somewhere in the body (usually on a heart valve) that breaks off and travels through the bloodstream so that it cuts off the circulation to an area of the brain, resulting in a stroke.

• Hemorrhagic stroke – Rather than an area of the brain being without blood and oxygen, a blood vessel in the brain opens up, causing bleeding to occur within the brain. This can be due to areas of weakness in the blood vessels or to aneurysms in the brain that open up and bleed.

Stroke Statistics In The United States

• Stroke is the 3rd leading cause of death in the United States
• There are 795,000 strokes every year
• Someone suffers a stroke every 40 seconds of each and every day in the US
• Stroke is the leading reason for serious disability overall, and those who survive are often left with paralysis and speech impairment causing long term disability, often requiring long term care
• After the age of 55 years old, the risk for stroke doubles every decade
• Almost ¾ of all strokes occur in people age older than 65

(Data source: Internet Stroke Center)

Prevention Of Stroke

There are different ways to prevent a stroke depending on the type of stroke you are trying to prevent. There are some things you can do that prevent a certain type of stroke but that has the potential to worsen another type of stroke.

The following are some things you can do to prevent a stroke:

• Maintain a normal blood pressure – This holds true for all kinds of stroke. If your blood pressure is too high, it contributes to arterial spasm and increases the risk of thrombotic stroke. If the blood pressure is too high, it can push the blood clot in the heart from the heart valve into the circulatory system of the brain, resulting in an embolic stroke. In a completely different way, high blood pressure can cause hemorrhagic strokes. If there is a weakness in the walls of any part of the brain’s circulatory system, high blood pressure can cause that weak area to open up, resulting in the kind of bleeding you see in a hemorrhagic stroke.

• Maintain a normal cholesterol – Cholesterol is what makes up part of the plaques that contribute to getting a thrombotic stroke. If you maintain a good level of cholesterol, the plaques don’t build up so much and the chance that a blood clot can form in the arteries is much less. You can keep a good cholesterol level by eating food that is low in cholesterol or by taking medications designed to lower the cholesterol level.

• Stop smoking – Smoking has the potential to raise your blood pressure, increasing the risk of all kinds of strokes. Smoking also contributes to plaque formation in the walls of the blood vessels so that the risk of thrombotic stroke increases. The longer you smoke, the greater is the risk of developing all kinds of heart disease, including that of thrombotic stroke.

• Take a baby aspirin – Baby aspirin is a commonly used medication used to prevent the recurrence of heart attack in a patient who has already had a heart attack. Aspirin is a platelet inhibitor, which means that it blocks platelets from sticking together and forming a blood clot. This same phenomenon can work in the prevention of both thrombotic strokes and embolic strokes. If the platelets cannot form a blood clot, it will prevent a blood clot from forming on a heart valve so that it can’t travel to an area of the brain, leading to an embolic stroke. In the same way, when platelets are blocked from forming a clot inside a narrowed area of the blood vessels leading to the brain, this thwarts the onset of a thrombotic stroke.

Living a healthy lifestyle so that the blood pressure is reduced, smoking is not a problem, and cholesterol is kept within normal levels will go a long way toward reducing the incidence of all kinds of strokes.

If you are concerned about stroke, or any type of heart disease it is a great idea to see your doctor and get a full physical and relevant screenings to be sure that there is not more that you can do to ensure you remain in optimal health.

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What You Need To Know About Taking Control Of Diabetes

Need To Know About Taking Control Of Diabetes

Good health is a fine balancing act that involves a range of bodily systems and functions. If something goes wrong with one of these systems, poor health can result. In some cases, the condition can be serious – even life-threatening.

diabetes
Diabetes

 

 

The American Diabetes Association’s most recent set of statistics, for 2012 (compiled in 2014), shows that more than 9% of the population has diabetes, but up to 25% are not diagnosed.

More than 25% of seniors over 65 have diabetes.

In addition, over 86 million Americans have what is termed pre-diabetes, an increase of more than 14% since the previous statistics for 2010.

Hispanics and African-Americans are two to three times more likely than whites or Asians to develop diabetes.

Link for more information:

 http://www.diabetes.org/diabetes-basics/statistics/

The more you learn about diabetes, the better you can learn how to prevent diabetes. Or, if you can’t prevent it, the better you can cope with the symptoms and avoid the many serious complications that can result from diabetes.

There are three main types of diabetes:

diabeteseducation
Diabetes Education

Type 1, Type 2, and gestational diabetes

The last one is diabetes which arises when a woman is pregnant.

Gestational diabetes can be treated like Type 1 diabetes.

Let’s look first at Type 1 diabetes.

What Is Type 1 Diabetes?

Type 1 diabetes is triggered when your immune system destroys cells in your pancreas called beta cells, which produce the hormone insulin. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disorder; that is, your body is attacking itself and destroying its own tissue.

Secondary type 1 diabetes can occur when a virus or something else damages the insulin producing beta cells of the pancreas.

Type 1 diabetes used to be referred to as juvenile diabetes because it was most common in young people. However, anyone can develop secondary diabetes at any age.

In addition, children as young as toddlers have now been diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes, so it is important to get an accurate diagnosis as quickly as possible of which type of diabetes you or a loved one are suffering from in order to get the right treatment.

In the case of Type 1 diabetes, it is usually very obvious when someone is ill because there are clear signs and symptoms, some of which may manifest as a medical emergency due to hypoglycemia, that is, low blood sugar. The opposite is hyperglycemia, high blood sugar. It is important not to confuse these terms when dealing with diabetes.

Hypoglycemia, low blood sugar, is dangerous because the  cells of your body need to use the food you eat as fuel. Insulin is an important hormone that helps move the sugar, or glucose, into your cells to keep you functioning normally. A lack of insulin can lead to collapse, diabetic coma, and in extreme cases, death.

Synthetic insulin is used to treat those with Type 1 diabetes.

Since those with Type 1 diabetes produce no insulin of their own, they need to get it through injection or another delivery method.

Many doctors recommend insulin pumps be implanted so the person with Type 1 diabetes will have a steady stream of insulin at all times. In this way they will not be affected badly if they do not take their insulin dose on time, or take an incorrect dose.

Pumps may be a good option for those who do not like to give themselves insulin injections. They are also a good solution for young people who might not be able to handle a complicated self-care routine by themselves.

Injectable insulin is the most common kind. Insulin types range from rapid-acting to long-acting, so it is important to pay attention to the treatment regimen your doctor prescribes.

Another option is inhaled insulin, though not enough research has been done on it as of yet to determine exactly how effective it is compared with other insulin delivery options.

The Symptoms of Type 1 Diabetes include:

depressionanddiabetes
Mood and Diabetes

* Always feeling thirsty
* Increased hunger, especially after eating
* Dry mouth
* Nausea and vomiting
* Pain in your belly
* Frequent urination
* Unexplained weight loss, even though you’re eating and feel hungry
* Fatigue (weak, tired feeling)
* Blurred vision

Signs of an emergency with Type 1 Diabetes include:

* Shaking and confusion
* Rapid breathing
* A fruity smell to your breath
* Pain in your belly
* Loss of consciousness, though this is rare

Type 1 diabetes is not currently preventable; however, there are many things you can do to properly manage it.

To appropriately manage your type 1 diabetes you need to follow your drug treatment plan, eat right, exercise, be vigilant about weight gain and avoid getting dehydrated.

If you get sick with flu or other common illnesses, you will also need to be extra careful, because nausea, vomiting, or not feeling like eating meals and/or becoming dehydrated can all lead to glucose imbalances.

If you suspect you or a loved one has type 1 diabetes, don’t delay in seeking treatment.

The sooner you start the appropriate treatment for diabetes the less likely you are to develop long term complications related to diabetes, such as neuropathy, kidney disease, eye disease, heart disease and strokes.

Now we will discuss Type 2 Diabetes.

What Is Type 2 Diabetes?

Type 2 diabetes used to be called adult-onset diabetes, but now that children as young as toddlers have been diagnosed with it, it is clear that it can happen at any age.

People with Type 2 diabetes produce the hormone insulin in the beta cells of their pancreas, but their cells are not able to use it as well as they should. This is termed insulin resistance. It can lead to a dangerous cycle of not being able to regulate the blood sugar as it goes higher and higher, a condition known as hyperglycemia.

There are a number of causes of Type 2 diabetes; the good news is that many of them are ones which you can control.

The following are the main causes of type 2 diabetes:

Genetic

It runs in family or there is an issue with your DNA that affects how your body makes insulin.

Being overweight or obese

obesityanddiabetes
Obesity and Diabetes

Being overweight can cause insulin resistance, especially if you carry your extra pounds around the middle. Termed a “spare tire,” or “waist roundness” by doctors, this is a warning sign of Type 2 diabetes. Losing weight can help get your diabetes under control, or even reverse it.

Metabolic syndrome

People with insulin resistance often have a group of related health conditions which are collectively known as metabolic syndrome.

(Metabolic Syndrome includes the following conditions)

* High blood glucose
* Extra fat around the waist
* High blood pressure
* High cholesterol
* High triglycerides, part of your cholesterol count

Metabolic syndrome can be a sign that a person will develop diabetes if they do not get all of these factors plus their weight under control.

The good news is that all of these can be relieved to a large degree by smarter eating habits.

Fatty liver disease

A fatty liver is one with more than 10% of fat as part of its mass. The fat stops the liver from working properly.

Studies have shown that those with fatty liver are more likely to develop Type 2 diabetes within five years of being diagnosed than those with a normal liver.

Link for more information:

http://www.webmd.com/diabetes/news/20110225/fatty-liver-may-be-linked-to-diabetes-risk

There are two main types of fatty liver disease:

1. Alcoholic 

2. Non-alcoholic.

Reversing fatty liver disease is possible by stopping alcohol consumption, losing weight, and watching your diet.

Damaged beta cells of the pancreas

If the cells that make the insulin send out the wrong amount of insulin at the wrong time, your blood sugar will get thrown off.

High blood glucose can damage these cells also, leading to a vicious cycle of the blood glucose getting higher and higher, and damaging more and more beta cells. Tight glucose control can help.

Bad signaling between cells

Sometimes cells send the wrong signals or don’t pick up messages correctly. If these problems affect how your cells make and use insulin or glucose, it can trigger diabetes. You may not be able to do much about this, but tight glucose control and eating a sensible diet will certainly help.

You may never know the exact cause of your diabetes, but your doctor will look at all of your test results to determine the underlying cause, if possible.

They will consider the most common risk factors and come up with a plan as to how you can stay in balance with diabetes, or even reverse it through lifestyle measures and good glucose control.

The symptoms of Type 2 diabetes can be similar to those of Type 1, but so mild you don’t always notice them. They don’t usually manifest as a medical emergency compared with Type 1 diabetes.

In fact, about 8 million people who have diabetes don’t know it and as mentioned earlier, more than 86 million people in the US are pre-diabetic.

It is important to note that women who have had gestational diabetes are two to three times more likely to get it during other pregnancies and at greater risk of developing Type 2 diabetes as they get older.

The most common symptoms of Type 2 diabetes are:

* Being very thirsty
* Urinating a lot
* Blurry vision
* Feeling tingling or numbness in your hands or feet
* Feeling tired all the time
* Getting cuts and scrapes that don’t heal well
* Yeast infections that you can’t get rid of
* Increasing frequency of erectile dysfunction

Type 2 diabetes may not show as a medical emergency, but it is a serious disease because it can lead to other serious health issues, including heart and blood vessel damage.

This can result in:

* Erectile dysfunction
* Amputation of toes, feet, legs and so on
* Kidney damage (diabetic nephropathy)
* Eye problems (diabetic retinopathy)
* Nerve problems (diabetic neuropathy)
* Serious infections even from simple wounds

Diabetes and its complications is the number seven cause of death in the US. It is the number two cause of limb amputation, after car and other serious accidents. Diabetes has a serious negative impact on quality and duration of life if you do not keep it under control.

Fortunately, there is a lot you can do to stay on top of your Type 2 diabetes, including deal with the risk factors we discussed above that are preventable.

There are a range of treatment options available as well, including insulin. Having said that, the good news is that not everyone with Type 2 diabetes needs to take insulin.

There is an ever-growing range of medications used to treat diabetes and control blood glucose, such as metformin, Actos, Januvia and Byetta.

Link – http://www.webmd.com/diabetes/diabetes-medications

To stay healthy if you have Type 2 diabetes, it is important to manage your diabetes well to avoid complications.

Some of the best ways to manage type 2 diabetes are:

* Take your diabetes medications or insulin on time
* Check your blood glucose levels regularly and map them on a chart
* Eat right
* Don’t skip meals
* Keep track of what you eat and map it against your chart
* Follow the dietary guidelines you will be given by the doctor
* See your doctor regularly to check for early signs of any serious side effects
* Exercise according to the guidelines your doctor will give you
* Stop smoking – it will improve circulation to help you avoid diabetes-related amputations
* Lose weight – some studies have shown that shedding as little as 20 pounds can actually reverse diabetes.

Now that you know the most important facts in relation to Type 2 diabetes, it’s time to compare them side by side.

Comparison of Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes

Key Differences:

There are several key differences between the two main types of diabetes that it is important to be familiar with.

Here is a summary of what you need to know.

1. Type 1 Diabetes

type1diabetes
Type 1 Diabetes

* An autoimmune disorder – This form of diabetes is an autoimmune disorder, that is, the body destroying its own organs and tissues.

* An emergency – People often seek medical help because they are seriously ill from sudden symptoms of low blood sugar.

* Hypoglycemia is a serious risk – low blood sugar is often the main issue.

* Insulin is essential for managing this condition safely. Many will be offered an insulin pump to try to keep blood glucose levels steady and reduce the risk of wrong doses or missed doses.

* Can’t be prevented.

* Usually shows up in young people, which is why it used to be referred to as juvenile diabetes.

* Can sometimes be triggered in a person of any age due to a severe virus.

2. Type 2 diabetes

* Type 2 used to be known as adult-onset diabetes, but it has now been diagnosed in children as young as toddlers.

* Not an emergency – most people do not have symptoms before it is discovered.

* Main issue is hyperglycemia, whilst Type 1 manifests as low blood sugar (hypoglycemia). In most cases, Type 2 will cause issues due to hyperglycemia, high blood sugar. The only exception will be if a Type 2 diabetic become hypoglycemic because they are not taking their medications correctly.

* Insulin – Some use insulin, but it is not essential compared with Type 1.

* Other drugs – There is currently a wide range of drugs available for dealing with blood glucose that do not involve insulin.

* Regular testing will be required to stay in balance.

* Can be prevented through healthy lifestyle choices. In some cases, it can even be reversed, such as through weight loss and a proper diet and regular exercise.

jogging
Jogging to Prevent Diabetes

These are the main differences between the two, but it is important to note the primary similarities as well.

All types of diabetes greatly increase a person’s risk of a range of serious complications. Although monitoring and managing the disease can prevent complications, diabetes remains the leading cause of blindness and kidney failure.

It also continues to be a critical risk factor for heart disease, stroke, and foot or leg amputations.

Now that you know how the three types of diabetes are similar and different, let’s look at effective self-care when you have diabetes.

Effective Self-Care When You Have Diabetes

As we have discussed, effective self-care is the foundation for staying health no matter what type of diabetes you have.

Monitoring

monitoringbloodsugar
Checking Blood Sugar

1. Monitor your blood glucose at least three times a day
2. Keep track of your readings on a chart
3. Take your insulin and all medications on time
4. Know exactly what each medication is and what it is supposed to do
5. Make sure you know the potential side effects of each medication
6. Discuss any questions or concerned with your doctor
7. Don’t forget to mention any other medications you might be taking, such as:
* Over-the-counter medicines
* Prescription drugs
* Vitamins and minerals
* Herbal/natural remedies
Many of these can interact with diabetes medications.

Diet

preventingdiabetes
Preventing Diabetes with Diet

* Follow your eating guidelines carefully
* Monitor what you eat, such as in a journal
* Cook more yourself – avoid restaurants, takeaway and convenience foods
* Eat more fiber in vegetables and salads
* Steer clear of empty calories, soda, juice, cookies
* Eat fruit in moderation; use as a dessert
* Learn a range of recipes for diabetics you can cook ahead and freeze so you always have safe, sensible choices you can take with you anywhere and eat any time you need a meal or healthy snack

Exercise and Fitness

* Exercise regularly
* Avoid injury such as blisters
* Lose weight
* Take care of your overall health – watch out for colds and flu
* Beware of any infections if you can’t seem to shake them

Consider Natural Treatments

Some of these natural remedies can be used safely in addition to your medications and other effective self-care options. Steer clear of anything that promises a diabetes “cure.” Always discuss any options you are considering with your doctor first.

For complementary medicine, suggested herbs that have been studied and shown to be effective in relation to blood glucose control include:

* Bitter melon
* Cinnamon
* Turmeric
* Fenugreek
* Aloe

Aromatherapy

These essential oils may not help blood glucose issues but they can be helpful in relation to skin conditions:

* Lavender
* Sandalwood
* Tea tree

Link for more information:
Aromatherapy – http://spectrum.diabetesjournals.org/content/14/3/124.full
Skin conditions – http://spectrum.diabetesjournals.org/content/14/3/124/T1.expansion.html

And these essential oils can help for stress relief, which can help maintain overall wellness:

* Lavender
* Rose
* Geranium

Link for more information:

http://spectrum.diabetesjournals.org/content/14/3/124/T3.expanson.html

Stress Relief

These methods can be very helpful in relieving stress:

* Meditation
* Biofeedback
* Journaling
* Joining a diabetes support group
* Getting counselling
* Massage therapy

These can other be done at home on your own, or using coverage provided by many health insurance plans.

Dealing with Depression/Anxiety

Many people diagnosed with a severe illness might develop depression, thinking nothing will ever be the same again.

Up to 75% of seniors with a serious medical condition can also suffer from depression.

A new diagnosis can also trigger worry and anxiety about what will happen next, worst-case scenarios, and more.

Seek help if you develop a mood disorder. Honest discussions with your health care providers, counselling, and/or joining a support group (in-person or online) can all help.

Education and Research

Above all, learn all you can about diabetes in order to discover what to look out for in relation to potential complications, so you can stay fit and well as long as possible despite your condition, or perhaps even reverse it.

Use the free resources available online from reputable sites to find recipes, eating plans and more. You can also connect with others who have diabetes so you can share information with them about what has worked well and what you might be struggling with.

Getting diagnosed with diabetes may make you feel as though you are the only person in the world that this has happened to. Unfortunately, you are one amongst millions with diabetes, and that number is growing all the time.

Knowledge is power, so learn all you can about your type of diabetes and follow through with action steps that will keep you safe and well for as long as possible.

Conclusion

The three kinds of diabetes can have a significant impact on your health if you do not take steps to keep your blood glucose under control according to the guidelines your doctor will give you.

There may not be much you can do about Type 1 diabetes, but good eating habits, keeping your weight down and exercising regularly can help with all three forms of diabetes.

Above all, monitor your blood glucose no matter which type of diabetes you have. Take your insulin or other medications as needed to avoid hypo-or hyper-glycemia, and see what a difference it can make to your health.

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The Effect High Blood Pressure Has on Your Body

The Effect High Blood Pressure Has on Your Body

If you have been told you have high blood pressure, you are probably wondering what effect it has on your body. High blood pressure that is untreated can result in many harmful effects on the body that can lead to many health problems.

It is important to understand the basics of high blood pressure and how it can negatively impact your body.

What Is Blood Pressure?

Blood pressure is the force generated by your blood on the walls of your blood vessels when the heart beats and when the heart is relaxing.

Your blood vessels are basically a set of interconnected tubes. The pressure of your blood flowing through them keeps them open. Much like your garden hose gets open and taut when filled with water, your blood vessels fill with blood.

If your blood pressure is too low, blood cannot be transported properly to all the cells of your body.

If your blood pressure is too high, your risk of  heart disease, stroke, kidney and eye problems goes up.

It’s important to keep your blood pressure in the normal range for optimum health.

When looking at your blood pressure readings, the bottom number or lower number is the pressure generated on the blood vessels when your heart is relaxing between beats.

This lower number is called the diastolic blood pressure.

Under most circumstances the ideal number for diastolic blood pressure is 70-80.

The higher number is referred to as the systolic blood pressure and is generated by the pressure on the walls of the blood vessels when the heart contracts.

The ideal number for systolic blood pressure is 120-130.

Your healthcare provider can take your blood pressure using a special cuff and instrument called a sphygmomanometer. You can also find digital machines in pharmacies or purchase one yourself to keep at home.

Ocassional elevation of your blood pressure is not usual.. Stress, infections, and activity can cause blood pressure to increase.

Taking your blood pressure while at rest will give you a picture of your overall blood pressure. If your readings are  consistently high it is important that you see your healthcare provider, so they can recheck your blood pressure and determine if further intervention is needed.

Breaking Down Blood Vessels

Perhaps the greatest damage that high blood pressure does is to damage the vessels that move the blood around your body. This is a critical transport system that delivers oxygen and nutrients and takes away carbon dioxide and wastes.

In particular, high blood pressure affects the arteries. These are vessels that take blood away from the heart to deliver oxygen and nutrition. They are under higher pressure than veins, which take blood back to the heart.

Having constantly high pressure causes the cells that make up the inside of your blood vessels to become damaged. They can actually become hardened. You might think at first that this makes them stronger, but it actually makes them weaker.

The tissue of the blood vessels needs to be elastic so that it can stretch when pressure increases and go back to its original shape when pressure decreases. But when arteries become hard, they can’t expand and contract.

Then as you eat a diet that’s high in fats, those fats can collect in the hardened areas of the arteries and eventually cause blockages. Because this system delivers blood to all parts of the body, many parts of the body can get reduced nutrition and oxygen.

Eventually blockages can lead to heart attacks – a condition where the heart doesn’t get enough oxygen and tissue actually dies. You can also become the victim of a stroke – bleeding in the brain that has the same result of tissue death.When arteries become weak, they can develop aneurisms. These are areas of weak walls in the arteries that bubble out. As they bubble out, they become stretched and unnaturally thin.

Eventually these can burst and can be a cause of stroke. You can also bleed to death internally when an aneurysm bursts and there are often no symptoms that this is even happening until it’s too late to repair.

If all this sounds pretty scary – it should. Heart disease and stroke are the number one killers of both men and women – higher than any cancers or other illnesses. This isn’t something to be taken lightly.

Hurting Your Heart

While we’ve discussed how heart attacks can happen when arteries are damaged, there are some other problems that high blood pressure can cause for the heart.

When your heart is constantly under arterial high blood pressure, it has to work harder. This constant wear and tear on the heart can cause it to simply get weak and wear out.

Even if you don’t have a heart attack, you can still suffer from heart failure. As the heart becomes weaker, it’s not able to pump nutrients and gases to the tissues and this begins to affect all systems of the body.

 

If you have had a heart attack that’s damaged your heart, this progression into heart failure can happen even faster. This greatly increases your risk of future heart attacks and heart failure.

 

You can also have problems specifically in the arteries that supply blood to your heart. These are called coronary arteries. They’re specialized in that they deliver blood from your heart back to your heart to provide it with oxygen and nutrients.

 

If they become hardened or blocked, they can cause your heart to perform at a lower rate and even cause a heart attack. They can also cause you to have an irregular heartbeat or chest pain.

 

Normally your heart is about the size of your fist, but when you have high blood pressure you can suffer from an enlarged heart on one side. The left side of your heart is responsible for delivering blood to the rest of the body.

 

When you have high blood pressure this side can get harder and can also get larger. An enlarged heart is not as efficient as a heart that’s the normal size for your body. This can increase your risk of a heart attack and heart disease.

 

Killing Your Kidneys

 

Your kidneys are also greatly affected by having high blood pressure. These are actually the organs that regulate your blood pressure. They do that by decreasing or increasing the fluid in your blood.

 

When you have high blood pressure, your kidneys can actually develop scars. Within your kidneys are millions of tiny blood vessels that become damaged when they’re exposed to constant high pressure.

 

As they become scarred, they’re less able to do their job of filtering blood. This can cause your body to not be able to filter waste properly and can lead to kidney disease.

 

You can also have an aneurysm in your kidney blood vessels. This type of aneurysm is very deadly because of how much blood travels through your kidneys – your entire blood supply passes through them. You could die from massive internal bleeding.

 

Finally, you may develop kidney failure. Kidney failure is the inability of your kidneys to filter waste either because of damage to large or small arteries that deliver blood to them.

 

When this happens you may have a buildup of toxins and have swelling due to increased body fluids. Over time you may require the process of dialysis. This is when blood is removed from the body and filtered in a machine then sent back to the body.

 

Ultimately, when you have kidney failure you may need a kidney transplant. However, the list for this is very long and the poorer your overall health is, the less likely you are to get an organ transplant.

 

 

 

Brain Damage

 

High blood pressure is also very bad for the brain. As we already discussed, high blood pressure puts you at increased risk of stroke. The effects of a stroke can include paralysis, memory loss, and even death.

 

However, there are other problems associated with high blood pressure. For example, people with high blood pressure are at a greater risk for dementia. This can be a result of not having enough oxygen being delivered to the brain.

 

You can also have impairment to your brain that keeps you from being able to process information. The earlier you begin to have high blood pressure, the greater the damage will be as you age.

 

Problems in the Bedroom

 

One of the most common causes of erectile dysfunction in men is high blood pressure. High blood pressure affects all the blood vessels in the body and can decrease flow to the penis.

 

But don’t think that you’re off the hook if you’re a woman. Women also rely on strong blood flow to the vaginal area for sexual arousal and satisfaction. It’s important to both sexes to keep blood flowing freely.

 

In fact, treating high blood pressure often eliminates the need to take drugs such as Viagra for sexual dysfunction. Your best bet for good sexual health is good heart health.

 

You can also have trouble sleeping. Studies note that high blood pressure and sleep apnea go hand in hand. Sleep apnea keeps you from getting enough sleep and actually puts you at risk for heart disease and other problems.

 

Eye Opening Issues

 

Your eyes are also very sensitive to changes in your blood pressure. The blood vessels of the eyes are very small and fragile and particularly vulnerable to damage from high blood pressure.

 

When the retina is not supplied with blood correctly, it can become damaged. You can have blurred vision or even a complete loss of vision when blood pressure goes unchecked.

 

You’re particularly at risk for this type of problem if you also have diabetes. Diabetes and high blood pressure greatly increase your risk of eye disease and loss of sight.

 

You can also have blocked blood vessels leading to your optic nerve. This, too, can lead to permanent blurred vision and even blindness. It’s critical that you pay attention to your blood pressure to have good vision.

 

Finally, problems with high blood pressure can lead to a buildup of fluid in your eye. This excess pressure can cause damage and scarring inside the eye and lead to permanent vision deterioration.

 

Bad to the Bone

 

You can even suffer from bone loss as a result of problems with your blood pressure. People with high blood pressure lose more calcium than those who have normal blood pressure.

 

As calcium leaves the bones and enters the bloodstream, bones can be left weak and brittle. This increases your risk for osteoporosis and broken bones. In fact, most hip fractures in seniors are really a result of bone disease.

 

While men can suffer from osteoporosis, women are generally more at risk after menopause. It’s important to keep track of your blood pressure and take corrective

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