HYDERABAD:As more than one-third people all over the world are suffering from hypertension, doctors gave a call to the general public asking them to “take a chill pill and just relax and beat the stress.’’
To ring an alarm and create awareness about the oft-ignored problem, ‘World Hypertension Day’ (WHD) is observed on Sunday (May 17). The occasion comes as a big jolt to us, when we know that every sixth person suffering from hypertension is an Indian.
Over the past two decades, the number of people suffering from hypertension has almost doubled. About 40 per cent, who are aged above 25 years, are suffering from hypertension in one form or the other, which is very unhealthy trend, observes Dr Srirang Abkari, consultant, Internal Medicine at Aware Global Hospital.
Doctors point out to ignorance and negligence among people as the reasons for growing incidence of hypertension. To address the problem this year’s WHD’s theme has been fixed as ‘Know Your Numbers’.
‘Know Your Numbers’ was decided to increase awareness on high blood pressure as 50 per cent of those suffering from hypertension are not aware of their condition. In certain sections, not even 10 percent know about their problem, points out DC Venkata S Ram, director, Apollo Institute for Blood Pressure Management.
In medical parlance a person is regarded as suffering from hypertension when his systolic blood pressure (SBP) is greater than 140 and diastolic blood pressure (DBP) is greater than 85. Besides lack of ignorance another problem is more than half of those diagnosed with hypertension or high blood pressure go untreated or partly treated.
To be able to diagnose early and administer proper treatment, doctors have classified the blood pressure readings of a person into four categories.
A person is normal if his SBP is less than 120 and DBP is 80. A person is suffering from pre-hypertension if his SBP is between 120-139 and DBP is 80-89.
A person is suffering from hypertension stage 1 if his SBP is between 140-159 and DBP is 90-99. A person is suffering from hypertension stage 2 if his SBP is greater than 160 and DBP is greater than 100.
No medication is needed if a person is in pre-hypertension stage. Just with lifestyle modification BP can be brought back to normalcy. But medication coupled with lifestyle modification is must for those suffering from hypertension, said Dr Sudhindra Vooturi, Lifestyle and Rehabilitation consultant a KIMS Hospital.
Sudhindra stresses on the early diagnosis and treatment of hypertension as it will lead to further serious problems like cardiovascular disaster, stroke, peripheral artery disease, chronic kidney disease, stroke-paralysis, loss of memory among others.
With urban population falling more prone to hypertension than rural populace, doctors pints out towards urbanisation and increasing stress levels for rise in hypertension.
Besides recommending lifestyle changes like healthy diet, regular exercise, Sudhindra asks to just cool down and take a chill pill.
‘Chill pill’ Ideas
■ Start counting from 1 to 10. Take a deep breath, relax.
■ Slow down. Chill, Relax. Life is so much easier when you slow down.
■ Take a walk instantly and allow your mind to relax.
■ Turn off all gadgets and meditate for 10 minutes.
■ Inhale all that’s good, exhale all that isn’t. Tomorrow will be better.
■ Call a friend or family member who will simply listen.
■ Stretch or do yoga for ten minutes.
■ Start singing your favourite song or listen to music and dance.
■ Think instantly at least ten happy moments of life.
■ Laughter is a good medicine to de-stress. Laugh it off and let it go.
■ Just let go. Relaxation is the art of letting go.
■ Say it ten times. ‘I am calm, positive, at peace’.