A stroke is caused by an interruption of blood flow to the brain. This may be due to a blood clot lodged in a blood vessel, or less frequently, the rupture of a vessel in the brain. Whatever the cause, strokes deprive brain cells of oxygen, which leads to cell damage and death. The number one risk factor for stroke is hypertension. Elevated blood pressure is hard on the blood vessels, making them more prone to rupture, and increasing the likelihood of a clot disrupting blood flow. Work with your doctor to determine the best treatment for you. It goes without saying that the single most important preventive measure is blood pressure control. It may include a therapeutic low fat diet, a low salt diet, and targeted nutrients, change in your living habits as quitting smoking, weight loss regular exercise. Reducing your alcohol intake may be recommended. Many medicines also can help reduce, and control high blood pressure. Your doctor will decide whether you need medicine in addition to dietary, and lifestyle changes. Sleep apnea is a health problem that can be associated with high blood pressure, heart problems, and stroke. The blood pressure is the force exerted on the walls of your blood vessels (artery) as blood flows through them. Your heart is like a pump. When it contracts or beats, it sends a surge of blood through the blood vessels and pressure increases. This is called systolic pressure.
When your heart relaxes between beats, your blood pressure decreases. This is called your diastolic pressure. Symbol = mmHg - millimeters of mercury is unit of pressure used in chemistry.
Normal blood pressure falls within a range – it is not one set of number. But if you are an adult, it should be less than systolic mmHg 140 / diastolic mmHg 90. If you have diabetes, renal insufficiency or heart failure, your doctor will want it to be no higher than systolic mmHg 130 / diastolic mmHg 85. If you blood pressure goes above this threshold and stays there, you have high blood pressure. Optimal systolic mmHg 120 / diastolic mmHg 80. Normal systolic mmHg 130 / diastolic mmHg 85. When blood pressure is consistently above normal it is called hypertension (high blood pressure), increased risk of stroke, heart attack, heart failure, and kidney disease.
Normal blood pressure is below 120/80 mmHg or lower is normal blood pressure.
Prehypertension is systolic pressure that is between 120 to 139 or diastolic pressure between 80 and 89.
Stage 1 hypertension is systolic pressure between 140 to 159 or diastolic pressure between 90 and 99 is high blood pressure.
Stage 2 hypertension is systolic pressure higher than 160 or diastolic pressure of 100 or higher.
Symptoms of stroke:
- one – sided paralysis
- sudden loss of speech or vision
- dim, blurred, or lost vision
- numbness or tingling in mouth or cheeks
- difficulty speaking or swallowing
- weakness in legs, and arms
- headache in back of head
- nausea, and vomiting
Sleep Apnea (OSAS - obstructive sleep apnea syndrome) is an independent risk factor for stroke. It triples risk of hypertension, elevates levels of clotting factors, and reduces oxygen delivery to the brain. If you Snore, get evaluated for Sleep Apnea.
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