Hypertension (High Blood Pressure) - FAQ

Frequently asked questions

A: If you have high blood pressure, avoid consuming too much salt and alcohol, smoking, or gaining weight as these may worsen your condition. Reducing and learning to manage stress may help too.

In addition, regular cardio or aerobic exercises strengthen your heart and lower your blood pressure. Working out regularly also helps to maintain a healthy weight.

Cardio or aerobic exercises include:

  • Ball or racquet games such as basketball or badminton
  • Cycling
  • Dancing
  • Jogging
  • Stair climbing
  • Swimming
  • Walking

Exercising regularly is the key to lower your blood pressure and maintain good heart health. Aim for:

  • 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity each week
  • 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity each week
  • 30 minutes of aerobic activity every day

A: Diabetes and hypertension share common causes, risk factors and often occur together. In diabetes, blood with high glucose can damage blood vessels and kidneys resulting in high blood pressure.

A: The RAAS hormones regulate your blood pressure by regulating the level of sodium and water absorption in your kidneys. A dysfunctional RAAS can lead to chronic hypertension.

A: High cholesterol and hypertension are often present together and are driven by the same lifestyle issues. Both increase the risk of vascular disease.

A: Thyroid disorders can result in high blood pressure when the thyroid gland does not produce enough thyroid hormone (hypothyroidism) or produces too much thyroid hormone (hyperthyroidism).

A: If you detect high blood pressure, lie down comfortably and take deep breaths to relax. Relaxing helps to slow your heart rate and reduce the pressure exerted by your blood in your blood vessels. Meditation may help too.

A: In general, high blood pressure is not known to cause fever.

A: Exercising regularly can improve your general health and lower your blood pressure. However, the effects of exercising varies across individuals and depend on your age and health condition, intensity of the exercise and control of other factors contributing to hypertension.

A: You may experience an increase in blood pressure during a heart attack due to your body's response to the stressful situation. However, a heart attack may also lower your blood pressure as damaged heart tissues pump less blood around your body.

A: Some blood pressure medications, such as amlodipine may lead to itchy skin. This could be due to an allergy to the medicine or from an underlying liver condition. Be sure to let your doctor know if you experience any side effects from your medication.

A: High blood pressure that develops during pregnancy is called gestational hypertension. It usually starts after 20 weeks of gestation or close to delivery. Your blood pressure will most likely return to normal after giving birth.

However, if you have chronic hypertension before your pregnancy, you are at risk of complications such as preeclampsia (kidney or liver damage) and eclampsia (seizures) during and after your pregnancy. Speak to your doctors about managing your hypertension during your pregnancy.

A: Hypertension medication are only available with a doctor's prescription and cannot be bought over the counter.

A: One of the risk factors of hypertension is family history. If you have parents or relatives with high blood pressure, there is a higher chance of you developing the condition.

A: Yes, you are still eligible to donate blood if you meet these conditions:

  • Your hypertension condition is stable.
  • You are only taking a single medication for hypertension and have been taking the same medication and dosage for at least the past 4 weeks.
  • You do not have related complications from hypertension, such as hypertensive heart or kidney disease.
  • Your blood pressure is within the acceptable range on the day of the blood donation.

A: Hypertension is a chronic disease which can be managed with changes to your lifestyle, diet and medication.

A: Hypertension is a serious health condition that increases your risk of heart, brain, kidney and other diseases if it is left untreated.

This page has been reviewed by our medical content reviewers.

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