If you or someone you know, has high blood pressure, this video will help you understand what it is and why it's important to keep it under control.
Overtime, high blood pressure will damage the walls of your arteries.
This damage can lead to life threatening conditions.
For example, an artery wall may become weak and form an enlarged area, called an aneurysm.
The wall may burst and bleed into the tissue around it.
In another example, damage to an artery wall may attract certain substances in your blood, such as cholesterol, fat, and calcium.
They may form a buildup called a plaque.
As the plaque gets bigger, blood flow in the artery is reduced.
Blood cells can stick to the plaque and form solid clumps, called clots.
Blood clots further reduce, or completely block, your blood flow.
If this happens in your brain, it can lead to a stroke.
If this happens in your heart, it can lead to a heart attack.
In another example, damage to the arteries in your kidneys may reduce their ability to work properly. This can lead to kidney disease.
In a final example, damage to your arteries makes your heart beat even harder, which raises your blood pressure even more and can lead to heart failure.
If you have questions about high blood pressure or any medications you have been prescribed for it, speak with your doctor.
It is important to take your medications as directed, and report any side effects you have.