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What Are The Symptoms Of Hypertension?

According to Affinity Health, a leading provider of high-quality healthcare, while hypertension (also known as high blood pressure) can often go undiagnosed for years, three common symptoms can help identify this condition.


Today marks World Hypertension Day, dedicated to raising awareness about the global epidemic of hypertension and its devastating consequences.


Hypertension affects millions of people worldwide. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), hypertension is a significant risk factor for cardiovascular disease, the leading cause of death globally.

What Is Hypertension?

Hypertension is a condition characterised by abnormally high blood pressure in the arteries. Blood pressure is the force of blood against the walls of the arteries as the heart pumps it around the body. Normal blood pressure is around 120/80 mmHg, but hypertension is blood pressure that consistently exceeds 140/90 mmHg.


In South Africa, hypertension is a growing health problem. According to the Southern African Hypertension Society, approximately one in three South Africans has hypertension, and it is estimated that up to 50% of adults over 50 have hypertension.


Worldwide, hypertension affects about 1.13 billion people, projected to increase to 1.56 billion by 2025.


“Hypertension is often called the ‘silent killer’ because it can have no symptoms and go undiagnosed for years,” says Murray Hewlett, CEO of Affinity Health). “When left untreated, hypertension can cause serious health problems such as heart attack and heart disease, stroke and brain problems, kidney disease, and blindness.


It is important to recognise the signs and symptoms of hypertension so that it can be diagnosed and treated before it causes serious harm.”

Three Red Flags Of Hypertension

There are three common symptoms of hypertension.


  • The first symptom is headache, especially in the morning.
  • The second symptom is dizziness, especially when standing up from a sitting or lying position.
  • The third symptom is blurred vision.

However, it is essential to note that other health conditions can also cause these symptoms, so a healthcare professional must check your blood pressure.

Who is Most at Risk of Hypertension?

High blood pressure is more common in people with the following.


·       With diabetes (both Type 1 and Type 2)

·       With a family history of high blood pressure

·       Who are overweight

·       Who have excess salt in their diet

·       Who lead sedentary lives

·       Who are alcoholic

·       Who lead stressful lives

Treatment Options

If hypertension is diagnosed, there are several treatment options available.


Lifestyle changes such as eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, and quitting smoking can help lower blood pressure. In addition, several medications can help control blood pressure, including diuretics, beta-blockers, ACE inhibitors, and calcium channel blockers.


Working with a healthcare professional to find the best treatment plan for you is essential.


“The good news is that you can manage hypertension with the right treatment,” adds Hewlett. If you have any concerns about your blood pressure, I encourage you to speak with your healthcare professional and get your blood pressure checked.”


On this World Hypertension Day, let us raise awareness about hypertension and its impact on global health. By recognising the signs and symptoms of hypertension and taking steps to manage this condition, we can work together to reduce the global burden of cardiovascular disease.

About Affinity Health

Affinity Health is South Africa’s leading health insurance provider, offering you a range of options, including access to the widest national provider network. We understand the importance of medical insurance that meets your needs, budget, and lifestyle. Our healthcare products are designed to protect you and your family when it matters. We strive to give our clients peace of mind and the highest standard of service. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

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