Hypertension and Smoking Addiction – Risks and Dangers

A vicious circle – the best way to describe the interaction of blood pressure with nicotine. At the end of the cycle, in addition to numerous organ diseases, there is also a heart attack. Although the summary of the problem can be expressed very simply, the actual process is highly complex. In addition, smoking addiction can also act as an enhancer of existing blood pressure problems.

The interaction of the organs

The causes of the rise in blood pressure caused by smoking are three main factors. Specifically, they would be bad enough in and of themselves, but their inevitable interaction within body mechanisms makes them even more of a threat.

Sympathetic activity: The sympathetic nervous system is that part of the autonomic nervous system that controls the regulation of blood pressure as well as metabolic and respiratory functions. Under the influence of nicotine, however, this control mechanism gets out of balance and among other things causes an increase in heart activity and resistance within the blood vessels. The result is cardiac arrhythmia and partial to complete occlusion of the vessels.

Vessel constriction: As a result of imbalance in the sympathetic or as a direct effect of smoking addiction, the narrowing of the blood vessels forms the core aspect of nicotine-related hypertension. Responsible for the vascular closure is not only the nicotine per se. Also contained in cigarette smoke additives may favor the arterial closure. Furthermore, the circulation and pumping capacity of the heart and blood vessels are severely impaired by the harmful substances, which offers hypertension further bases for manifestation. In this context, the danger of blood thickening caused by the smoke should not be underestimated, which may lead to further blockage of the vessels.

Lack of oxygen: Since the cigarette smoke a large amount of carbon monoxide gets into the blood, with permanent nicotine consumption and the supply of organs, especially the heart, with oxygen at risk. Now O2 is of essential importance for the integrity of the organs and their functionality. A deficiency supply therefore brings about serious organ damage. Heart attacks and strokes are thus the worst danger when smoking, while hypertension in this area, merely ‘a precursor to the complete failure of the heart.

Hypertension-and-Smoking-Addiction

The interaction of risk factors

The exact value of systolic blood pressure increase is between 7 mmHg and 10 mmHg when smoking. However, further increases may be added if smoking is associated with one of the following aspects.

    • Smoking due to stress in most cases implies that high blood pressure is already present before consumption. This results from the increased heart activity that results from stressful situations.
    • The same applies to cigarette consumption in combination with obesity. In addition, weight-related arteriosclerosis and vasoconstrictive substances meet and, together, provide even greater resistance within the blood vessels.
    • Smoking addiction in concert with alcohol can not only increase the risk of hypertension, but also of cardiac arrhythmia. As nicotine constricts the vessels, alcohol temporarily expands them so that the pumping intervals of the heart become completely out of balance.

Also in connection with lack of exercise or a wrong diet, the risk of high blood pressure by smoking is greater than normal. In addition to the dysfunctional properties of nicotine here are still added to nutrient deficiency or resilience problems that affect the activity of the heart and organs. Already existing dysfunctions of the organs, such as those caused by unhealthy foods or too little exercise, are further expanded by smoking cigarettes.

The Signs and Symptoms of Myocardial Infarction

If you suspect a heart attack to delay until an ambulance is called, can have devastating consequences. The sooner intervention takes place, the greater the patient’s chances of survival. Every minute counts. It all depends on the patient getting to the clinic as soon as possible, where effective procedures can save his life and limit the damage of the infarction. Everyone can learn to recognize the heart attack and react quickly.

Cause of death No. 2 : Heart attack

Every day about 767 people in Germany suffer a heart attack. That’s 280,000 people a year. Around 49,000 of the men and women affected die as a result, most of them before they go to hospital.

The reason: many patients are still waiting far too long to call the ambulance; because they wanted to wait or because they repressed the heart attack because they did not want to bother anyone out of false consideration and, above all, because they did not interpret the alarm signs correctly. It should always apply: Better to call the ambulance once too much than not at all or too late.

signs-of-myocardial-infarction

Heart attack: alarm

The most common heart attack symptoms are severe chest pain lasting for more than five minutes, which may radiate into the arms, shoulder blades, neck, jaw, upper abdomen. In this case, immediately call the ambulance at 112 or the local emergency number. Further alarm signs :

    • Strong tightness
    • heavy pressure in the chest
    • fear

In addition to chest pain, there may be shortness of breath, nausea and vomiting, and in many cases women may even be alarmed by it. In addition, potential signs may include unconsciousness, pale, pale complexion, and cold sweats.

No flash out of the blue

A heart attack means that a coronary vessel is closed by a clot (blood clot). As a result, part of the heart muscle is cut off from the oxygen supply: hence the pain and nausea.

Two major dangers bring the heart attack with it:

    • The one danger is a life-threatening cardiac arrhythmia, the ventricular fibrillation triggered by the heart attack. The heart stops pumping and cardiovascular arrest occurs. In the ambulance and in the clinic are defibrillators available that can eliminate this cardiac arrhythmia electrically.
    • The other danger that a heart attack brings is the pumping failure of the heart. The longer the heart attack occurs, the more heart tissue is lost.
Myocardial infarction: sign under stress

Unexpected and sudden – this is how people experience their heart attack. But many have had complaints before. Signs that have clearly warned of the infarct, but were not taken seriously. A warning sign that precedes the dramatic event of days, weeks, sometimes even months, is the angina (chest tightness). This leads to pain or a feeling of pressure in the chest or only shortness of breath.

The difference to the heart attack is that these signs occur only under load (for example climb stairs, mountain walks, snow sweep) and disappear after a few minutes in peace. For chest pain, even with unexplained gastric or back pain, which only occur under stress, the heart must be thoroughly examined.