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High Blood Pressure

Hypertension and adolescents

Hypertension in adolescents is more common than most people realize, and lifestyle changes must be made to avoid potentially fatal consequences

Though high blood pressure is often associated with older adults, managing hypertension in adolescents is not unheard of. Unfortunately, because teenagers are not usually considered a risk group, they may not monitor their symptoms or go for a checkup before their condition worsens. The contributing factors are, for the most part, the same between adolescents and adults, but there may be a secondary condition that has caused the teenager's high blood pressure.

Hypertension and adolescents
Hypertension and adolescents

These secondary conditions usually occur in premature births, where the child's kidneys, lungs or heart may not function properly, resulting in high blood pressure. Even so, adults often live a lifestyle that promotes hypertension, and adolescents are no different. Adolescent hypertension is common enough that blood pressure should be monitored in routine checkups even in childhood.

Ultimately, failure to treat high blood pressure results in an increased risk of heart attack, kidney disease and stroke. Unfortunately, these diseases are becoming more and more in childhood; therefore young people need to take every measure to ensure that their high blood pressure does not carry on into adulthood, where they will then begin to experience long-term consequences. Hypertension and adolescents should not be overlooked.

Hypertension and adolescents

The number of adolescents suffering from hypertension is increasing over the years, in no small part because there has been a stark shift in the lifestyle of children and teenagers across Canada. The rise of obesity and the sedentary lifestyle has resulted in a whole host of medical problems for youth. Everyone seems to be getting too much screen-time: in front of television, computers, game devices, and the endless supply of hand-held electonics.

Studies have shown that 4.5 percent of children have stage 2 hypertension and adolescents have been found to have it in a range between 1 to 12 percent, in no small part due to the way young people live their daily lives. This is a major finding—to think that even young children have this condition that was thought to be for middle-age folks only.

Hypertension and Adolescents

There are lifestyle changes that should be made to prevent high blood pressure. It is especially effective if these changes are made before entering adulthood, where hypertension then begins to give rise to more serious conditions. Eating healthy, avoiding second hand smoke and exercising regularly all cut back on hypertension and adolescents should be encouraged to change their habits and improve their health before high blood pressure gives way to heart attacks and stroke.


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