Forbes India 15th Anniversary Special

High blood pressure: A condition worth avoiding in everyone

Hypertension can lead to severe health complications, and can even harm the Fetus during Pregnancy, says Dr. Balwant Kumar

Published: Dec 9, 2019 12:03:35 PM IST
Updated: Dec 9, 2019 01:39:55 PM IST

High blood pressure: A condition worth avoiding in everyone
Since, high blood pressure is so common, it might be tempting to assume that it’s no big deal. But the truth is that when left untreated, high blood pressure can put you at risk for potentially life-threatening complications. It can lead to severe health complications and increase the risk of heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, erectile dysfunction, eye disease, and sometimes even death. Keeping blood pressure under control is vital for preserving health and reducing the risk of these dangerous conditions. Hypertension can be identified with regular checks, and if found, it can be successfully treated using a combination of medication and heart-healthy lifestyle changes—or sometimes, lifestyle changes alone.

Taking high blood pressure seriously and following your doctor’s treatment instructions can lower your risks of serious complications and make a big difference in your overall health. Regular blood pressure monitoring can help people avoid these more severe complications.

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High blood pressure during pregnancy

High blood pressure or hypertension during pregnancy can impact the body in different ways than it normally would. It poses a higher risk of complications not only to the mothers, but may also impact the baby. Several factors influence the risk of hypertension during pregnancy in women, such as age, body weight, previous pregnancies, medical history including the history of high blood pressure, immune disorder, kidney disease etc. High blood pressure complicates about 10 percent of all pregnancies. A majority of cases can be prevented by making simple lifestyle changes, including diet and exercise.

It is important for women to attend regular prenatal checkups to ensure that their blood pressure and other vital signs are within normal ranges, and receive treatment if not. The management of hypertension during pregnancy depends on the severity, cause and time of onset.  Hypertension during pregnancy typically goes away after childbirth, but increases the risk of high blood pressure and heart disease in the future. While a doctor must closely monitor hypertension in pregnancy to prevent potentially life-threatening health complications, it is important that pregnant women attend regular prenatal evaluations and report any abnormal symptoms to ensure their own health and that of their infant.

Disclaimer: The views, suggestions and opinions expressed here are the sole responsibility of the experts. No Forbes India journalist was involved in the writing and production of this article.