High blood pressure, also known as hypertension or HBP, happens when blood moves through your arteries at a higher pressure than normal. Many people with high blood pressure don’t have any symptoms, but those who do, typically do so after blood pressure has reached a dangerously high level over time. Keep reading to find out a few key factors that affect your risk of developing high blood pressure.

Family history- If a close relative suffers from HBP, you are at a higher risk of developing it. It is more prevalent in some families and not in others, leaving genetics responsible for about one-third of all cases of HBP. This could also be influenced by similar habits that family members often share.

Age- Approximately 65 percent of Americans over the age of 60 have high blood pressure. Our arteries stiffen with age, which can cause blood pressure to rise.

Weight- Being overweight or obese causes an increase in workload for the heart when it comes to pumping blood throughout the body.

Smoking- The nicotine in cigarette smoke raises your blood pressure and narrows your arteries. It makes your blood more likely to clot and is a precursor for a heart attack or stroke.

Alcohol Consumption- Drinking more than three drinks in one sitting temporarily raises your blood pressure levels. However, regular, heavy drinking can lead to a rise in blood pressure to unhealthy levels.

Salt- Too much salt in your diet can lead to HBP. As the sodium in your blood increases, vessels retain water to try to balance things out. This in turn increases the volume of blood in your blood vessels, leading to high blood pressure.

High blood pressure is linked to a number of factors and knowing what those are can help you and your loved ones in the prevention and management of this condition.

If you or someone you love is suffering from high blood pressure and looking for new treatment options, studies are enrolling now in your local area that may help.  Research doctors are evaluating new treatment options and qualified participants may have access to potential new HBP treatments.  Participants often receive care from board-certified physicians and other medical staff, and may receive compensation for time and travel expenses. To learn more about these studies and to see if you qualify CLICK HERE.