According to a recent New York Times article, Americans have made some progress in controlling high blood pressure (48% of Americans fit in this category), but we still have a long way to go.
High blood pressure is still the leading cause of heart attacks, strokes, congestive heart failure and kidney disease.
More than 50% of American adults who have high blood pressure do not have it under control.
How do you get your blood pressure under control? A healthy blood pressure is lower than 120 but over 80. Many people do not know that they suffer from high blood pressure, let alone how to treat it if they do have it.
- The first step in treating high blood pressure (hypertension) isknowing that you have it (20% of those who have don't know it)
- The next step is doing something about it once you know (80% know they have high blood pressure and don't treat it)
- The reasons why people don't treat their high blood pressure include:
- Side effects of medication
- Not knowing how serious high blood pressure is (the silent killer)
- Not knowing that changing diet and exercise can lower blood pressure
- Others have an even worse situtation in that they are being given the wrong medication or dosages by their doctor
- The article also provides ideas for better treatment of high blood pressure:
- Tailoring care to each person
- Better use of the high blood pressure medicines we already have
- Better understanding on the part of doctors about which medications work best for each person
Read the New York Times article here