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WHAT CAN YOUR URL: http://www.americanheart.org. July 2005.

MONTGOMERY COUNTY
DOCTOR DO? FIRE AND RESCUE
The only way to find out if you SERVICES
have high blood pressure is to
have your blood pressure
checked regularly. VISION STATEMENT

1. Pinpoint risk factors and The Vision of the Montgomery


help you change your lifestyle. County Fire and Rescue
Service is to keep our What you should
Offer medication for the
2.
reduction of blood pressure and
communities safe and healthy know about your…
by providing comprehensive
arrange regular monitoring. and effective life safety and
Sometimes blood pressure property protection services
control is not straightforward. through diverse partnerships.
3. Seek a specialist. Your
doctor may wish to seek the
BLOOD
advice of a specialist if your blood
pressure is difficult to control. PRESSURE
WHAT ELSE SHOULD I
KNOW?
By treating hypertension early,
complications can be avoided
and average life expectancy can
remain almost normal.
Isiah Leggett, County
Without treatment, life Executive
expectancy may be well
Richard Bowers, Fire Chief
reduced due to the risk of
developing complications such Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Services
as heart failure or stroke. 101 Monroe Street, 12th Floor
Rockville, Maryland 20850
Phone (240) 777-2400
References:

Rutherford, Dan MD. URL:


http://www.netdoctor “Hypertension”. Sept.
2004.
FACTS ABOUT pumps less efficiently. Your
arteries take a beating, and
4. Heart failure – reduced
pumping ability of the heart.
HIGH BLOOD your chances of a stroke, heart
5. Kidney failure – the
PRESSURE attack, and kidney problems are
greater. decreased ability of the kidneys
to filter waste products from the
HOW DO I KNOW IF I blood.
Blood pressure is the force HAVE HIGH BLOOD
of the blood against the PRESSURE? RISK FACTORS
walls of the arteries. High blood pressure usually has • Family history
no symptoms. In fact, many
Your blood pressure is at people have high blood pressure
1. • Obesity
its highest when the heart for years without knowing it. High
blood pressure can include the
beats, pumping the blood. This • Smoking
following symptoms:
is called systolic pressure.
• Headache • Diabetes Type I or Type II
2. When the heart is at rest,
between beats, your blood • Sleepiness • Kidney Diseases
pressure falls. This is the
diastolic pressure. • Confusion • High alcohol intake

3. A normal blood pressure • Vertigo • Excessive salt intake


is 120/80.
WHAT ARE SOME • Lack of exercise
4. When the level stays high, COMPLICATIONS OF
140/90 or higher, you have HIGH BLOOD • Certain medicines (such as
high blood pressure.
PRESSURE?
steroids)
1. Atherosclerosis –
WHY SHOULD I CARE? narrowing of the arteries. WHAT CAN I DO TO
According to the American Heart PREVENT IT?
Association, nearly one in three 2. Stroke – hemorrhage or Every adult near or past middle
U.S. adults has high blood blood clot in the brain. age should “know their
pressure. Because there are no numbers” i.e. your weight,
3. Heart attack – occurs when
symptoms, nearly one-third of height, blood pressure and
a blood clot obstructs a
these people don’t know they cholesterol levels.
coronary artery constricting
have it.
blood flow to that part of the Change your lifestyle!
Because your heart has to work heart.
harder, it gets bigger and • Stop smoking
• Lose weight

• Exercise regularly

• Cut down on alcohol

• Reduce Stress