How to Diagnose High Blood Pressure?

When you go to the doctor, blood pressures checks are normal. Using a blood pressure cuff, which can determine the pressure in which the blood flows through your arteries, your doctor then able to see a blood pressure reading. Normal readings are considered anything lower than 130/80 mmHg.

But since your blood pressure can change in a matter of minutes, it’s not uncommon to have a few readings out of the normal range. Usually, this is nothing to worry about. However, if your blood pressure continues to be elevated, you could have pre-hypertension or hypertension.

What is High Blood Pressure?

High blood pressure, also known as hypertension, is medical condition where the pressure in which the blood moves through your arteries and vessels is elevated. When left unchecked, it can cause a variety of serious problems including stroke, aneurysm and cardiovascular disease.

Since high pressure usually doesn’t present with symptoms, it’s estimated that nearly half of all adult in the USA have undiagnosed hypertension. Most people only become aware there’s an issue when they visit the doctor or possibly are in the later stages of hypertension and start to develop symptoms.


While some-existing medical conditions can cause high blood pressure, essential hypertension really doesn’t have one known cause. Most cases of hypertension happen without a reason and usually get worse over time. In addition to getting older, there are several other risk factors that increases the likelihood of developing high blood pressure.


Up to the age 45, high blood pressure is more prevalent in males than females. After both genders turn 65, the likelihood of developing high blood pressure is comparable. Women may also have a higher risk of developing high blood pressure after menopause, when estrogen levels dramatically decline.

In addition, pre-existing conditions, like diabetes and kidney disease, can also increase your risk of developing hypertension.

Lifestyle Choices

Your lifestyle habits can also be a precursor to developing high blood pressure. Smoking, alcohol and recreational drug use and lack of physical exercise cause elevated readings and eventual diagnosis oh high blood pressure.


If your doctor suspects you have hypertension, he or she may ask that you track your blood pressure readings for a set period of time. If your readings continue to be elevated, even with lifestyle changes, you may need treatment. Your doctor may also order additional blood tests to look for other underlying medical conditions.

Treatment and Prevention

Most causes of high blood pressure are easily treatable. Getting regular exercise, eating a low-salt and low-fat diet and avoiding alcohol consumption are three of the best ways to keep your blood pressure readings in check. Getting at least 30 minutes of aerobic exercise each day, for a total of 150 minutes a week, can also help lower elevated readings.

However, there are cases where even with healthy lifestyle choices, blood pressure readings may still be elevated. If so, your doctor may recommend starting an oral anti-hypertensive medication, which will lower blood pressure into normal range.

The Takeaway

Since high blood pressure is coined the “silent killer,” it’s important to be proactive. Monitor your blood pressure regularly and if you risk factors that predispose you to developing high blood pressure, speak to your family doctor about ways to reduce the risk.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top