“The National Alliance for Hispanic Health has found that Hispanics have the highest percentage for high blood pressure out of all ethnic groups. As a doctor, I educate my patients on the awareness and severity of their health and high blood pressure, to all ethnicity but most importantly to the Hispanic community. There are more hypertension realted deaths reported among Hispanics than other ethnicities due to the lack of awareness of the severity of this disease and treatment.
Hypertension, also known as high blood pressure, moves the blood through your arteries at a higher pressure than normal, which can be very dangerous if not treated. High blood pressure is mostly common in Hispanics, than other races due to lack of awareness, no health insurance, poverty, eating habits and drinking or smoking. Today many Hispanics are being diagnosed with high blood pressure more often now due to lack of doctor visits and late treatment of unknown disease. This silent disease rarely has any symptoms but sometimes can be associated with other diseases such as diabetes, obesity and high cholesterol which is common in Hispanics.
Normal blood pressure is less than 130/85 and any reading over 140/90 is stage 1 hypertension. There are many risks and contributions to high blood pressure such as smoking, high salt intake, drinking too much alcohol, high fat foods, stress, high cholesterol or drug intake. The many factors of high blood pressure can lead to severe organ damage, stroke, heart attack, kidney failure or even death.
Besides medications, there are multiple ways to prevent and treat high blood pressure such as limiting tobacco and alcohol use. Limiting salt and high cholesterol intake will help prevent high blood as well as exercise and eating enough potassium, calcium and magnesium. With medications given there might be side effects such as fatigue, trouble sleeping, headaches, dry mouth and dizziness, which should be immediately told to your doctor if found.
I strongly advise to anyone with past history of high blood pressure visit a clinic yearly and if diagnosed with stage 1 be rechecked within two months or if more severe monthly or weekly depending on pressure for immediate evaluation and treatment. Though this disease can come and go, at times it is permanent and needs to be treated. Many people are uninsured and can’t afford proper medical care but there are clinics such as mine, Roya Family Medical Center that give consultations, evaluation and treatment for an affordable price.”
Michelle J. Alexandre, MD