Standard First Aid Training, Courses and Re-Certifications.
Header

Home Remedies for High blood Pressure

December 2nd, 2016 | Posted by Dannah Mae P. Banares in Circulatory Emergency - (Comments Off on Home Remedies for High blood Pressure)
Black mold

High blood pressure also known as hypertension is a condition that may cause health problems because it is a long term force of the blood against your artery walls. Blood flows through blood vessels higher than the normal pressure.

Blood pressure usually rises with age and body scope.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=diG519dFVNs&t=2s

Two types of High Blood Pressure

  1. Primary High Blood Pressure

Primary or essential hypertension tends to develop over years.

 

  1. Secondary High Blood Pressure

Secondary hypertension tends to appear all of a sudden that causes higher blood pressure.

 

If diagnosed with hypertension, you may encounter the following signs that may mean your condition is secondary hypertension:

  • Hypertension that does not respond to medications.
  • A systolic blood pressure over 180 mmHg or over 120 mmHg of diastolic blood pressure is considered as very high blood pressure.
  • No obesity
  • No family history

Signs and symptoms

Lifestyle factors are responsible for a growing burden of hypertension. Physically inactive, fatty foods, alcohol and tobacco can cause hypertension.

Hypertension can be secondary to other conditions also, such as kidney diseases.

high blood pressure

A systolic pressure below 120mmHg and a diastolic pressure below 80mmHg is the normal blood pressure for adults.

Medications also can be associated with hypertension.

The following can be associated with hypertension:

  • Severe headache
  • Fatigue
  • Chest Pain
  • Vision Problems
  • Irregular Heartbeat
  • Blood in Urine
  • Difficulty Breathing

 

Treatment and Prevention

 

Lifestyles are used first to treat hypertension. It includes:

 

  • Salt Restriction – typical salt consumption is between 9 and 12 g a day. Modest blood pressure declines can be attained in people with usual levels by lowering salt to around 5 g a day. The highest effects are perceived in people with hypertension.

 

  • Control of alcohol consumption – Research rules say moving from moderate to extreme drinking is “linked both with high blood pressure and with an increased threat of stroke”.

 

 

  • High intake of vegetables and fruits – people at risk of high blood pressure are directed to minimize intake of saturated fat.

 

  • Regular Exercise – hypertension is closely connected with excessbody heaviness and weight reduction is accompanied by a fall in blood pressure

 

 

  • Reduce stress – avoiding stress and develop healthy coping approaches for managing stress can help control hypertension, especially to those who are engaged to alcohol, drugs, smoking and unnatural foods to manage stress.

 

Smoking can also increase blood pressure. It has a broader effect on heart health and the rest of the body so giving up smoking is highly suggested for people with high blood pressure.

 

Stable Angina: First Aid Management

May 15th, 2015 | Posted by Mikha Canon in Circulatory Emergency - (Comments Off on Stable Angina: First Aid Management)

Stable angina is feeling of chest pain or discomfort that is characterized by having a usual pattern when it comes to intensity and regularity, meaning its onset can be predictable. It typically manifests with activity or stress, as opposed to unstable angina where there is no regular pattern and can become more intense and more frequent than stable angina as time passes by.

Each year, millions of individuals suffer from stable angina. It is commonly associated with coronary heart disease, the most common type of heart disease in adults. Although having certain diseases can increase an individual’s likelihood of developing stable angina, lifestyle factors and the environment can also play a role in predisposing an individual to experiencing angina. Medical conditions such as hypertension, diabetes, high LDL and low LDL cholesterol, and lifestyle practices such as, smoking, eating large meals and lack of exercise can all increase risk of stable angina.

Stable angina is the most common type of angina. Medically, it is known as angina pectoris. It is often indicative of a heart attack in the future.

Causes of Stable Angina

Because the heart is working all the time, it needs a constant supply of oxygen, hence stable angina occurs when there is insufficient amount of oxygen-rich heart in the blood. Although stable angina is not a diagnosis on its own, it is commonly a symptom of an existing medical condition. The following medical conditions may lead to chest pain or discomfort:

  • Coronary heart disease – most common cause of stable
  • Heart attack
  • Aortic dissection (tearing of a major artery of the heart)
  • Aortic stenosis (narrowing of the aortic valve of the heart)
  • Atherosclerosis
  • Pulmonary embolism
  • Infection of the lungs

Symptoms Associated with Stable Angina

As previously mentioned, stable angina is not a disease on its own, however, there are associated symptoms that manifest with it, such as:

Chest pain

The chest pain in angina usually occurs behind the breastbone

  • Chest pain or discomfort that occurs behind the breastbone or slightly to its left that usually lasts from one to fifteen minutes
    • Increases in intensity before disappearing slowly
    • Described as a sharp, dull, burning, squeezing, heavy or tight feeling in the chest
    • May radiate to the neck, jaw, shoulders, (left) arm or back
  • Shortness of breath
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Feeling of indigestion
  • Weakness
  • Fatigue
  • Light-headedness
  • Sweating

First Aid Management for Stable Angina

Due to the regularity in pattern of stable angina, symptoms associated with this pain can be relieved by making lifestyle changes and taking medications, and if necessary, surgical procedures. The following procedure is recommended during stable angina:

  • If the patient is engaged in exercise or strenuous activity, tell the person to stop and rest first. If the patient is in a stressful situation, remove the person from this situation and go to a place of peace.
  • Assist the patient into a position of greatest comfort.
  • Reassure the patient and keep the person calm.
  • Assist the patient into taking medications if they have.
  • If the patient experiences angina for the first time, call for emergency medical services, as angina could be a symptom of a heart attack.
  • If necessary, initiate CPR.

Know how to properly assist a patient experiencing chest pain by taking First Aid Courses and CPR Classes. Stable angina is a chest pain or discomfort characterized by having a regular pattern of onset and intensity that can be relieved by resting or medications.

Online Sources:

http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000198.htm

Blood Pressure Basics – Your Numbers and Readings

August 23rd, 2014 | Posted by Aris Eff in Being Prepared | Circulatory Emergency - (Comments Off on Blood Pressure Basics – Your Numbers and Readings)

Understanding an individual’s blood pressure readings might seem complicated at a first glance, but it’s not. All you need to do is to familiarize what the upper and lower number means what these two indicate. By understanding what these readings mean, you can identify if a person is having a low or high blood pressure, as well as if a person’s blood pressure is within the healthy range or not.

What Does The Top Number Indicate?

Systolic is the number located at the top of a blood pressure reading. Systolic number is created by the force of the blood pushed from the heart through the different parts of the body. The normal systolic number is 120 and below. When this number increases more than 120, the person is likely at risk of having different forms of hypertension – a systolic that reaches 121 to 139 means that the person has pre-hypertension; systolic reading of 140 to 159 is considered as stage I hypertension; and systolic of 160 and above is called as stage II hypertension.

What Does the Lower Number Indicate?

Diastolic is the number at the bottom of the reading. Diastolic pressure is created by the arterial pressure that happens when the heart is at rest in between beats. The normal diastolic pressure is 80 and below. If the systolic reaches 81 to 89, it is considered pre-hypertension, but if it goes beyond 89, it is already considered as high blood pressure or hypertension.

Should you worry if your blood pressure reaches pre-hypertension?

Pre-hypertension, or the systolic between 121 and 139 and diastolic between 81 and 89, is a red flag for high blood pressure or hypertension. Although pre-hypertension is not technically a high blood pressure, if you are not going to maintain a healthy lifestyle, you are likely to end up having high blood pressure eventually. Basically, pre-hypertension should serve as a warning sign that you should start taking up healthy lifestyle changes, including diet and exercise.

If your blood pressure is normal, however, it does not mean that you should not engage in healthy lifestyle. As a matter of fact, adopting to or maintaining a healthy lifestyle is a must for adults, because it can likely delay or prevent the onset of hypertension, as well as other health problems related to high blood pressure, such as diabetes and kidney diseases.

Related Video on Blood Pressure Reading:

[su_youtube url=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=COgaOg5IxDY”]

Sources:

“Blood Pressure Chart.” Mayo Clinic. Retrieved online on August 14, 2014 from http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/high-blood-pressure/in-depth/blood-pressure/art-20050982

“Understanding Blood Pressure Readings.” American Heart Association. Retrieved online on August 14, 2014 from http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/HighBloodPressure/AboutHighBloodPressure/Understanding-Blood-Pressure-Readings_UCM_301764_Article.jsp

Cardiac Health Conditions – Heart Attack

August 23rd, 2014 | Posted by Aris Eff in Circulatory Emergency - (Comments Off on Cardiac Health Conditions – Heart Attack)

Some are sudden and intense, while others are mild and slow – heart attacks come in various types and intensity, but most of them can be life-threatening if not given proper medical attention. Every year, many men and women die from the disease, making it one of the most common causes of deaths among adults.

 

How Does Heart Attack Happen?

Cardiac muscles need oxygen to function and survive. During a heart attack, the oxygen supply provided by the blood does not reach the cardiac muscles, because the pathway is severely obstructed by a plaque. These plaques are the result of too much fat and cholesterol accumulation in the arteries that, in the long run, cause obstruction in the blood pathway. Although this process is a long one, too much accumulation of plaque can eventually wear off in the arteries and this can clog in the blood supply of the cardiac muscles. Subsequently, the cardiac muscles become starved or deprived of oxygen and other important nutrients transported by the arteries. This is condition is known as ischemia. When ischemia causes damaged to a part of the heart or the cardiac muscles, it can result to myocardial infarction, which is more commonly known as heart attack.

Warning Signs of a Heart Attack

The most common symptom is chest pain or discomfort that lasts more than 5 to 10 minutes. Sometimes, though, the pain disappears and comes back intermittently. The kind of pain usually felt by patients include a squeezing sensation followed by shortness of breathing. Victims cannot usually go deep breathing, because the pain becomes more severe. Other common symptoms include pain or discomfort in one or both arms, stomach, back and jaw, lightheadedness, nausea, and cold clammy skin.

Important Questions to Ponder:

Can it Permanently Injure the Heart – Heart attack can cause injury to the heart muscle, which can eventually lead to death if not given prompt treatment. But the injury can be reverted as long as management and treatment is started early. The injury may depend on the depth and severity of the affected heart muscles, which means that the healing process can be slow or fast. The length of healing time, therefore, depends on the extent of the injury.

Other Possible Causes Aside from Blockage – Even though there are no blockages in the arteries, heart attack can still occur as a result of the arteries contracting or going into spasms. When this happens, the blood pathway narrows down, decreasing the blood flow going to and from the heart.

Related Video on Heart Attack:

[su_youtube url=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3LKjPgGmc00″]

Sources:

“Heart Attack.” American Heart Association. Retrieved online on August 14, 2014 from http://watchlearnlive.heart.org/CVML_Player.php?moduleSelect=hrtatk

“Warning Signs of Heart Attack, Stroke & Cardiac Arrest.”  American Heart Association. Retrieved online on August 14, 2014 from http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/911-Warnings-Signs-of-a-Heart-Attack_UCM_305346_SubHomePage.jsp

 

Breathing Problems – Paroxysmal Nocturnal Dyspnea

May 20th, 2014 | Posted by Aris Eff in Circulatory Emergency - (Comments Off on Breathing Problems – Paroxysmal Nocturnal Dyspnea)

There are certain things that can wake us up late at night and these include hunger, bad dreams, thirst and even bathroom runs. But when you wake up late at night with the urge of choking, shortness of breathing, suffocating and running out of breath, it could be a sign of paroxysmal nocturnal dyspnea. Generally, breathing problem is associated with a much more serious and distressing disease – that is, heart problem.

How Does Paroxysmal Nocturnal Dyspnea Occur?

This condition is characterized by shortness of breath accompanied by wheezing and coughing. It usually happens several hours after a person falls into deep sleep in a reclining or semi-reclining position. Paroxysmal nocturnal dsypnea also occurs when a person experiences cold sweats and increased heart rate. It is also known as cardiac asthma, because it mimics some of the symptoms of asthma. However, the difference between the two is that asthma attacks are due to constricted airways resulting from inflammation, while paroxysmal nocturnal dyspnea happens when the air sacs of the lungs are filled with fluid (a condition also known as pulmonary edema). Commonly, a person who experiences paroxysmal nocturnal dyspnea attacks would wake up at night gasping for breath due to feelings of suffocation. Relief from symptoms is felt a few minutes after the attack. Although an episode of paroxysmal nocturnal dyspnea is not fatal, it is life-threatening because it indicates a likelihood of heart problem.

first aid for asthma attack

Individuals with asthma commonly use asthma inhalers.

Associated Heart Illnesses

Paroxysmal nocturnal dyspnea is basically one of the many symptoms of left-side heart failure. When a person suffers from left-side heart failure, he/she commonly accumulates more fluid in the lower extremities, because of the inability of the heart to pump blood properly. At night when the person is lying down, the fluid accumulates in the lungs. When air sacs are filled with fluid, the oxygen level falls down, resulting in over-activity of the heart. Because the left side of the heart is unable to match the working capacity of the right side, it results in a pulmonary distress, causing paroxysmal nocturnal dyspnea.

Managing the problem

It is best to lie on bed with an elevated head. Usually a head that is elevated higher than the heart level can help relieve symptoms of shortness of breath. Low sodium, low salt diet also helps avoid fluid retention in the body. When there is low fluid retention, the likelihood of accumulating more fluid in the lungs is also decreased. Still, it is important to see a doctor to determine the underlying cause of your paroxysmal nocturnal dyspnea, as well as to provide the necessary medications and supplementary oxygen needed.

Learn more about circulatory problems

If you want to learn more on how to manage and recognize circulatory problems like paroxysmal nocturnal dyspnea, you can enroll in a CPR and/or first aid course with a credible emergency/ first aid provider near your area. Check out our locations page for more information.

Related Video On Paroxysmal Nocturnal Dyspnea

[su_youtube url=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZDT1Tm3l5v8″ width=”200″ height=”200″]

Sources:

Dyspnea, Orthopnea, and Paroxysmal Nocturnal Dyspnea. (2013). NCBI. Retrieved online on May 20, 2013 from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK213/ Paroxysmal Nocturnal Dyspnea. (2012). Netdoctor. Retrieved online on May 20, 2013 from http://www.netdoctor.co.uk/ate/seniorshealth/201395.html

Heart Issues – Understanding Angina Pectoris

May 19th, 2014 | Posted by Aris Eff in Circulatory Emergency - (Comments Off on Heart Issues – Understanding Angina Pectoris)

How Angina Pectoris Occurs?

Angina Pectoris, or simply known as Angina, is a heart condition characterized by the cholesterol plaque build-up on the innermost lining of the coronary arteries. These arteries supply blood and oxygen to the heart. Cholesterol plaque build-ups are thick and hard substances caused by too much cholesterol deposited in the arterial wall. In the long run, the plaque build-ups become too thick, resulting in the hardening and narrowing of the artery. When there is too much plaque build-up in the arterial wall it results in inadequate blood supply going to and from the heart.

When a person performs strenuous activities – especially during excitement or exercise – the heart pumps more blood to produce more oxygen. But since the artery is narrowed down, it cannot function properly to meet the increasing blood supply demand. This results to lack of blood supply in the heart, and the first thing that the person will feel is the sudden onset of chest pain among any other symptoms.

Angina Pectoris

Angina Pectoris

What Other Signs And Symptoms Occur With Angina?

Aside from pain, which usually occur at the center of the heart, other symptoms of angina include:

  • Profuse sweating
  • Weakness
  • Numbness of the left neck, left arms, or left shoulder
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Tingling sensation in the upper extremities

Important Considerations

Not all chest pains are considered as angina. There are other causes of chest pain including upper respiratory infection, asthma, sore chest muscles, and acid reflux. The best way, therefore, to determine that a chest pain is angina if it results from too much physical exertion, extreme temperatures, strong emotions, stress and other activities that require too much work demand from the heart.

Angina is not a heart attack. But consequent episodes of angina – even in moderate intervals – mean that a person is at an increased risk of suffering from heart attack. This is therefore a good warning sign that you need to seek medical attention in order to prevent the possibility of heart attack.

When the chest pain does not go away after a couple of minutes, it is important to call emergency assistance, because it may indicate a possible heart attack and not angina anymore. Always remember that angina happens and goes away quickly; prolonged chest pains are likely to be from a heart attack.

What To Do When A Patient Suffers From Angina Pectoris?

  • As part of emergency first aid, it is necessary to assist patient to relax and avoid unnecessary movements so that the heart could rest and the pain could go away.
  • Reduce any stress that could further trigger chest pain.
  • Give nitro-glycerin medications or chewable aspirins as prescribed.
  • Finally, and most importantly, seek medical attention so that appropriate intervention could be ruled out. You may need to visit a hospital emergency or cardiologist to get proper medical evaluation.

Where To Learn More?

To learn more about recognizing and managing circulatory emergencies enrol in a first aid and / or CPR course with a credible provider near you. Visit our locations page to find a provider in your area.

Related Video On Angina Pectoris

[su_youtube url=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RClCl6m1ubA” width=”200″ height=”200″]

Sources:

Acute Heart Diseases. (2013). Auxiliary Medical Services. Retrieved online on May 19, 2013 from http://www.ams.gov.hk/eng/firstaid10.htm

Chest Pain Treatment. (2013). Web MD. Retrieved online on May 19, 2013 from http://www.webmd.com/first-aid/angina-pectoris-treatment

Pulmonary Embolism: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

March 25th, 2014 | Posted by vanfirstaid in Circulatory Emergency - (Comments Off on Pulmonary Embolism: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment)

Pulmonary embolism is a fatal medical condition that requires emergency medical services as soon as possible. It is when there is a sudden blockage in one or more lung arteries. It is usually caused by a blood clot in any part of the body, most commonly the leg, that breaks loose and travels to the major blood vessel of the lung through the bloodstream. An estimated half of all the people who experience pulmonary embolism show no symptoms, although the commonly associated symptoms will be discussed later.

Pulmonary embolism may occur to anyone, even in healthy individuals. In cases of multiple or large clots, it may result to death. Other less serious complications include lasting damage to the affected lung, decreased levels of oxygen in the blood and damage to the other body organs from the decreased oxygen distributed to the organs. Treatment is usually aimed at dissolving the clots and prevention of other clots from forming.

[su_youtube url=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SzsQWIMYbN8″ width=”200″ height=”200″]

Causes of Pulmonary Embolism

Pulmonary embolism is often a complication from deep vein thrombosis (DVT), where blood clots originating from the deep veins of body, frequently the legs, travel to the arteries in the lungs, although it should be noted that not all cases of DVT result to pulmonary embolism. The following may also cause pulmonary embolism:

  • Other substances can form blockages within the blood vessels of the lung itself
    • Fat from within the marrow of a broken bone
    • Amniotic fluid
    • Part of a tumour
    • Air bubbles

Risk Factors for Pulmonary Embolism

The following factors are known to increase chances of developing pulmonary embolism in individuals:

  • Inactivity for prolonged periods, e.g. bed rest or long flights or car trips
  • Recent surgery involving the brain, abdomen, pelvic or legs
  • Recent fractures
  • Certain illnesses such as chronic heart disease, high blood pressure, paralysis, cancer or severe infection
  • Conditions such as heart attack, stroke
  • Taking medications such as, birth control pills or hormone therapy
  • Pregnancy and childbirth, especially if caesarean section
  • Family history of pulmonary embolism
  • Smoking

Symptoms of Pulmonary Embolism

In half of pulmonary embolism cases, it is asymptomatic. In the other half that reported symptoms, the symptoms include:

  • Sudden, inexplicable shortness of breath
  • Trouble breathing
  • Chest pain
  • Coughing with or without blood
  • Arrhythmia
  • Increased heart rate
  • Swelling of the leg or along a vein
  • Pain and tenderness in the leg
  • Anxiety
  • Light-headedness or syncope
  • Wheezing
  • Sweating excessively

Treatment for Pulmonary Embolism

Pulmonary embolism requires immediate medical treatment to avoid complications from progressing. Medications or surgical procedures may be required to thin the blood or remove the clot. Treatment for pulmonary embolism includes:

  • Medications
    • Anticoagulants
    • Clot dissolvers (thrombolytics)
    • Surgical procedures
      • Clot removal
      • Vein filter
      • Surgery
      • In cases where there is no pulse detected, follow protocol for CPR.

Disclaimer: This article does not provide medical advice or treatment. The information given should not be used for self-diagnosis. Seek medical attention when necessary. To learn more about to how to give CPR in cases of medical emergencies such as pulmonary embolism, enrol in first aid and CPR classes with an American or Canadian provider.

Source:

Pulmonary embolism (2013). Mayo Clinic. Retrieved September 27, 2013, from http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/pulmonary-embolism/DS00429

Pulmonary Embolism – Topic Overview. 2011. WebMD. Retrieved September 27, 2013, from http://www.webmd.com/lung/tc/pulmonary-embolism-topic-overview

First Aid For Hypertensive Emergency

March 22nd, 2014 | Posted by vanfirstaid in Circulatory Emergency - (Comments Off on First Aid For Hypertensive Emergency)

Hypertensive emergency is a type of hypertensive crisis wherein blood pressure spikes to a very harmful level that it may damage the organs of the body.

First Aid For Hypertensive Emergency

First Aid For Hypertensive Emergency

Hypertensive emergency is a type of hypertensive crisis wherein blood level spikes to a very harmful level that it may potentially damage the organs of the body and cause other complications. There is a need to reduce blood pressure immediately to avoid imminent organ damage. Blood pressure readings is given in two numbers, written as 120/80 mmHg. The first number is called the systolic blood pressure whereas the second number is called the diastolic blood pressure. Normal blood pressure should read less than 120/80 mmHg most of the time, whereas hypertension is read as any number greater than 140/90 mmHg.

Hypertensive emergency is different from hypertensive urgency, another type of hypertensive crisis, wherein there is a spike in blood pressure but there is no damage that occurs to the organs of the body. It can be managed with blood pressure medication. On the other hand, given from its names, hypertensive emergency is a medical emergency that requires immediate emergency medical help. Treatment to lower high blood in a hypertensive emergency can usually only be done in an emergency room.

Causes of Hypertensive Emergency

The following may lead to hypertensive emergencies:

  • Forgetting to take blood pressure medication
  • Heart attack
  • Heart failure
  • Kidney failure
  • Stroke
  • Aorta rupture (the main artery of the body)
  • Interactions that may occur between medications

Signs and Symptoms of Hypertensive Emergency

In some cases of hypertension, there are no symptoms present. However, in cases of hypertensive emergencies, the following signs and symptoms may include:

  • Severe chest pain
  • Intense headache, supplemented by blurred vision and/ or increasing confusion
  • Severe anxiety
  • Shortness of breath, that may be increasing
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Seizures
  • Unresponsiveness

Complications of Hypertensive Emergency

If left untreated or treatment time takes too long, complications may arise from hypertensive emergencies. Some of the hypertensive emergencies be severe, which can include:

  • Altered mental state, e.g. confusion
  • Stroke or bleeding into the brain
  • Heart failure
  • Heart attack
  • Unstable angina
  • Pulmonary oedema (or fluid in the lungs)
  • Aneurysm
  • Eclampsia (occurs during pregnancy)

First Aid Management of Hypertensive Emergency

When a person discovers that they have hypertension, it should be treated immediately to avoid progressing to hypertensive emergencies. In scenarios that a person shows symptoms of hypertensive emergency, the following steps are generally recommended:

  • Call for emergency medical services immediately. If there is no access to this, have another person drive the victim to the hospital right away.
  • Do not wait to see if pressure reduces on its own.

Disclaimer: This article does not provide medical advice or treatment. The information given should not be used for self-diagnosis. Seek medical attention when necessary. Learning how to recognize symptoms of medical emergencies can help save a life. To learn more about to how to recognize symptoms, enrol in first aid and CPR training that includes content related to circulatory emergencies.

Sources:

High blood pressure (hypertension). (2011). Mayo Clinic. Retrieved on October 14, 2013, from http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/hypertensive-crisis/AN00626

Nazario, Brunilda. (2011). WebMD.  Retrieved on October 15, 2013, from http://www.webmd.com/hypertension-high-blood-pressure/guide/hypertensive-crisis