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What Does High Blood Pressure Cause?

Does high blood pressure cause a life-threatening situation? The answer to this question is determined only after fully understanding the extent of the high blood pressure you have. Hypertension can cause a number of complications.

High blood pressure makes your heart work harder. It causes the arteries to strain. If this continues, it could lead to a failure of the heart to work properly. This can lead to the body's organs not working properly.

A good way to understand what occurs within the body is to look at how high blood pressure develops.

In your body, the heart pumps blood out into the arteries. The larger arteries lead to smaller ones, called arterioles. These then taper down in size to the capillaries. The capillaries then supply oxygen and nutrients from the blood to all of the cells in your organs and body tissues. The blood then flows back to the heart through your veins.

Your body tells your arteries to dilate, or become larger, and to contract, or become smaller. This happens through nerve impulses.

Normally, the arteries open wide enough for blood to flow easily. When the arteries fail to open enough, the blood builds up pressure. This is when high blood pressure can occur. 

What Does High Blood Pressure Cause?

The higher the blood pressure in your arteries builds, the harder the workload is for your heart. Blood vessels will strain trying to maintain that pressure.

Over time, this workload continues to cause an insufficient amount of oxygen rich blood from getting to your organs. Your organs cannot function properly with this limited supply of nutrients.

Then What Happens?

Understanding what causes blood pressure is just the first step. Look at what could happen if left untreated:

  • The body can handle high blood pressure for some time.

  • The heart, kidneys and brain may be able to handle high blood pressure for years without a problem (in some people.)

  • Most people have no symptoms of this high blood pressure. If left untreated over time.

  • High blood pressure eventually causes decay within the body. Something fails.

Does high blood pressure cause risk factors? The answer to this is yes. High blood pressure is an important risk factor in the development of heart attacks, strokes, heart failure and kidney failure.

There is no way of knowing when any of these conditions will occur, but it is likely that the heart or another major system within the body will exhibit signs of weakening due to the high blood pressure.

Return to "What Causes High Blood Pressure" from "Does High Blood Pressure Cause".

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