Family History Is a Major Clue Into Hypertension Risk
The warning signs of hypertension are few and far between. But that doesn’t mean you have to leave it up to chance. There are many steps you can take to increase your chance of detecting high blood pressure early or reduce your risk of developing it altogether. One of the most important risk factors for hypertension is your genetics and family health history. High blood pressure often runs in families. If one of your parents, a grandparent, or a sibling developed hypertension before turning 60, you are twice as likely to have the condition than someone with no family history. It also puts you at higher risk for stroke and heart attack. So it’s very important to learn your family’s health history and pass that information on to your doctor. Even if you are at higher risk for hypertension, it’s not inevitable that you will develop the condition. You can make changes to your lifestyle to reduce other hypertension risk factors, such as improving your diet, exercising, and quitting smoking.