Research has shown that Covid patients with hypertension, diabetes and heart disease may have a tendency to develop severe symptoms that may even lead to complications.
Even young, healthy people are developing high BP issues due to the stress that comes from the daily intake of negative news and lack of physical exercise.
Four doctors tell The Morning Standard why blood pressure must be checked at regular intervals, and a specialist should be consulted in case it is elevated.
Dr Shuchin Bajaj, Founder & Director, Ujala Cygnus Group of Hospitals
Measuring blood pressure regularly is very important, especially for those above 30 who are suffering from comorbidities such as obesity or have a lethargic/sedentary lifestyle and not exercising regularly. Or who have diabetes or any family history of hypertension. Since hypertension is a silent disease, you cannot tell if you are suffering from it unless you measure it regularly. You must have a good quality BP instrument at home, and measure your blood pressure after 30 minutes of relaxation. Don’t measure it immediately after you come back from work or after doing exercise. Measure your blood pressure at least once a day, if not twice.
Dr Manisha Ranjan, Cons. Obstetrician & Gynaecologist, Motherhood Hospital, Noida
During pregnancy, high blood pressure or hypertension is quite common. The fear and stress of the deadly infection is making women prone to hypertension, making them more vulnerable to serve Covid illness if they get positive. It is essential for pregnant women to follow healthy and mindful living. High sources of salt and sodium such as pickles, frozen items and canned soups should be avoided. Pregnant women should practice yoga or meditation, and stay away from negative news, quite rampant on electronic and social media. They should their measure blood pressure regularly, and take the pills that the doctor has suggested to control hypertension. Unmanaged high blood pressure can be fatal for the mother and the child.
Dr Deepak Verma, Internal Medicine, Columbia Asia Hospital, Ghaziabad
The rise of hypertension in young people, especially in urban areas, is a matter of huge concern for two reasons. First, uncontrolled hypertension can have fatal results such as heart attack or stroke. Second, it is a preventable lifestyle disease that can make a person more susceptible to Covid-19, irrespective of age. Simple lifestyle changes can help one prevent or delay tits onset, including reduced salt intake, sodium and alcohol intake, eating heart-friendly foods such as vegetables, fruits, whole grains, fish and low-fat dairy. Avoid a sedentary life. Exercising regularly can help a lot to gain optimum weight and shed extra weight. Manage stress through yoga and meditation and quit smoking.
Dr Aswati Nair, Fertility Consultant, Nova IVF, New Delhi
Hypertension has become a serious issue owing to our preferences to junk food, irregular sleep patterns and stress are major contributors to this chronic illness. The high prevalence of uncontrolled hypertension in women leads to diverse pregnancy outcomes, including premature delivery, foetal growth restriction, foetal death, placental abruption and caesarean delivery. In men, hypertension can result in infertility issues such as low semen volume, sperm motility, total sperm count, and motile sperm count. It is essential that a couple who is planning to conceive, first combat high blood pressure with a healthy diet and physical activity, maintain a healthy weight and practice stress management techniques.