High blood pressure – does your heart feel like this? Serious warning sign

Around a third of adults in the UK have high blood pressure, although many will not realise it. That’s because the condition usually does not produce any visible signs. The only way to find out if your blood pressure is high is to have your blood pressure checked.

According to the NHS, blood pressure testing is available:

  • At your GP surgery – by a GP, practice nurse, healthcare assistant or self-service machine
  • At some pharmacies
  • At an NHS Health Check appointment offered to adults aged 40 to 74 in England
  • In some workplaces
  • At a health event.

Occasionally, a consistently high blood pressure reading can trigger a hypertensive crisis, however.

A hypertensive crisis is a severe increase in blood pressure that can lead to a stroke.

As the Mayo Clinic explains, extremely high blood pressure can damage blood vessels.

“The blood vessels become inflamed and may leak fluid or blood,” says the heath body.

As a result, the heart may not be able to pump blood effectively, it adds.

A hypertensive crisis is normally accompanied by a range of sudden and (to varying degrees) acute symptoms.

A large Italian study analysed the profile of patients that were diagnosed with hypertensive crises.

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Out of 1,546 hypertensive cases, 25.3 percent were reported as hypertensive emergencies.

The majority of the hypertensive crisis patients reported non-specific symptoms, such as palpitations.

Heart palpitations are heartbeats that suddenly become more noticeable, according to the NHS.

“Your heart may feel like it’s pounding, fluttering or beating irregularly, often for just a few seconds or minutes,” the health body says.

Other non-specific symptoms included headache, dizziness and vomiting.

How to respond

If you experience a severe increase in your blood pressure, seek immediate medical attention,” advises Mayo Clinic.

“Treatment for hypertensive crisis may include hospitalisation for treatment with oral or intravenous medications,” says the health body.

In the longer term, lifestyle changes are usually required to bring your blood pressure under control.

The two most important improvements you can make to lower your reading is eating a healthy, balanced diet and exercising regularly.

In regards to the former, one of the most important dietary modifications is to slash your salt intake.

The NHS said cut your salt intake to less than six grams (0.2oz) a day, which is about a teaspoonful.

“Adults should do at least 150 minutes (two hours and 30 minutes) of moderate-intensity aerobic activity, such as cycling or fast walking, every week,” it added.

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