I with a family history of high blood

I chose to write my paper on Hypertension, which is also
known as high blood pressure, because I have been suffering from it since the
age of 16.  The disease runs on both
sides of my family and a significant amount of my family also suffers from high
blood pressure.  All four of my
grandparents died of a stroke which I now know was associated with them also
suffering with high blood pressure. 

A great deal of research has shown that hypertension is very
common in Hispanics.  I am Hispanic and
have had high blood pressure since I was 16 years old.  Blood pressure is the force of your blood
against the walls of your arteries (MedlinePlus, 2017).  Blood pressure is measured using two
numbers.  The first number, which is also
known as the top number, is called systolic blood pressure.  The systolic blood pressure measures the
pressure in your blood vessels when your heart beats.  The second number, which is also known as the
bottom number, is called diastolic blood pressure.  The diastolic blood pressure measures the
pressure in your blood vessels when your heart rest between beats.  Since this condition is diagnosed through blood
pressure readings, it is often gone undetected for years.  High blood pressure is also nicknamed “the
silent killer”.  That is because there
are no certain symptoms or signs to alert you of the problem.

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Family members share genes, behaviors, lifestyles, and
environments.  All of this can influence
the risk of diseases.  Genetic factors
most likely play some type of role in high blood pressure.  However, it is more likely that people with a
family history of high blood pressure share common environments, lifestyles and
behaviors that increases their risk. 
Race/ethnicity, age, and genetics can cause high blood pressure, and
these are risk factors you cannot control. 
The more family members you have with high blood pressure, the stronger
the family history.  Genes are units of
heredity passed from parents to their children. 
A strong family history means you have three or more family members with
high blood pressure.  Just because you
have a family history of high blood pressure, it does not mean that you will
also get it.

The biggest problem I encountered is that the older
generations never really spoke about any diseases they may have had.  It is also very common amongst the Hispanic
community to never ask questions about their health.  They just accept the diagnosis they are given
and don’t has any questions about it to be able to educate themselves about the
condition.  I really could not go to my
grandparents to ask any questions because they all died at an early age due to
this disease.  Their children only knew
that they had it but did not know any details about it like age of onset.

I have two children, a son and a daughter.  Since they were old enough to understand, I
have been trying to educate them on the strong family history we have of high
blood pressure.  I have been telling them
that just because there is a strong family history, it does not mean that they
will also get high blood pressure, it just means that they are also at a higher
risk.  I am always encouraging them to
live a clean and healthy lifestyle to avoid not just high blood pressure but
other diseases like diabetes and high cholesterol.  


I'm Shane!

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