Did you know hypertension (high blood pressure) may cause kidney failure and erectile dysfunction? In this article, SingHealth Polyclinics (SHP) shares the other ways high blood pressure could affect you.
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Why you should keep your blood pressure under control
High blood pressure (hypertension) can cause kidney failure
Hypertension (high blood pressure) can damage the arteries leading to the kidneys and the blood vessels in the kidneys. "This affects the kidneys’ ability to remove excess water and waste products from the blood. In turn, this may lead to kidney failure," says Dr Ian Phoon, Consultant,
SingHealth Polyclinics (SHP), a member of the
Hypertension may cause sexual dysfunction
In men, hypertension can cause
erectile dysfunction (ED). It may make it more difficult for a man to have or maintain an erection due to reduced blood flow to the damaged penile arteries. Women with hypertension may experience vaginal dryness and lower sex drive.
Hypertension can cause bone loss
People with hypertension tend to excrete more calcium in the urine. Excessive calcium loss can lead to loss in bone density. The body needs calcium to maintain strong bones and teeth, and help blood vessels move blood throughout the body.
Hypertension is associated with sleep problems
People who are overweight and tend to snore may have
obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA). This is a condition in which one repeatedly stops breathing momentarily or has shallow breathing during sleep. Symptoms are daytime sleepiness despite adequate hours of sleep. People with OSA tend to have higher blood pressure.
Hypertension is a sign of preeclampsia in pregnant women
Preeclampsia, a condition characterised by hypertension (high blood pressure) and protein in the urine, affects a small percentage of pregnant women. Uncontrolled high blood pressure affects the unborn child’s growth as blood flow to the placenta reduces. Severe preeclampsia or eclampsia, where the mother suffers from seizures and convulsions, may develop.
Hypertension is one of the components of the metabolic syndrome
Metabolic syndrome is a group of risk factors that increases your risk for heart disease and stroke. These factors include high blood pressure, excess abdominal fat, high cholesterol and high glucose levels.
How to control your blood pressure
Knowing what high blood pressure (hypertension) can cause, take action now to control your blood pressure. Here are some ways:
Reduce your salt intake (e.g. consume less chili, soya sauce, ketchup, instant noodles and salty soups; avoid potato chips or French fries)
Eat more fruits and vegetables daily
Stay physically active (e.g. climb the stairs, or walk further to lunch)
Keep a healthy weight
Check your blood pressure regularly
See previous page for
more dangers of high blood pressure (hypertension).
Check out our other articles on high blood pressure (hypertension):
Hypertension: Understanding Blood Pressure Ranges
High Blood Pressure: Top 5 Myths
High Blood Pressure: 5 Ways to Lower It Without Medication
3 Foods to Avoid to Prevent High Blood Pressure
4 Foods to Eat to Bring Down High Blood Pressure
How High Blood Pressure Affects Men and Women Differently
Pre-Hypertension: How to Know If You Have It