Did you know that 46% of Americans—nearly 1 in 2—have high blood pressure? Many people don’t even know they have high blood pressure (also called hypertension). That’s because there are often no warning signs. But having high blood pressure makes a stroke or heart attack much more likely.
Why? High blood pressure is the force of your blood moving against the walls of your arteries. So when your blood pressure is too high, your heart is on overdrive in a sense. Over time, elevated blood pressure can weaken your heart, blood vessels, kidneys and other parts of your body.
Remember, though, there are many steps you can take to lower your blood pressure. It’s important to work together with your health care team to set your blood pressure goal—the reading you’d like to consistently see when your blood pressure is taken—and how you can best reach it. If you have coronary artery disease, diabetes or chronic kidney disease, managing high blood pressure is especially important.
Use this condition center to learn more about high blood pressure. You can keep up with the latest research, and get tips to help you feel your best.