About one in three U.S. adults has high blood pressure! When your heart beats, it pumps blood round your body to give it the energy and oxygen it needs.
As the blood moves, it pushes against the sides of the blood vessels. The strength of this pushing is your blood pressure.
Every blood pressure reading consists of two numbers or levels. They are shown as one number on top of the other.
– The first (or top) number is your systolic blood pressure. It is the highest level your blood pressure reaches when your heart beats.
– The second (or bottom) number is your diastolic blood pressure. It is the lowest level your blood pressure reaches as your heart relaxes between beats.
If your blood pressure is too high, it puts extra strain on your arteries and this may lead to heart attacks and strokes.
Signs of high blood pressure include, headache dizziness, pounding in ears, and a bloody nose. These symptoms typically don’t occur until high blood pressure has reached an advanced and even a possibly life threatening stage.