High blood pressure remains one of the deadliest, yet most underestimated conditions in the world, and the UAE is no exception.
According to a nationwide study conducted earlier in 2018, many residents in the UAE are in the dark about just how serious high blood pressure can be, and how prevalent the condition actually is. Of those surveyed, 45% believed that it wasn’t a serious condition, while 44% were very unaware of the fact that high blood pressure could be fatal.
On a further note, perhaps due to the lack of awareness of the seriousness of the condition, the study found that only one in every six respondents had ever been checked or tested for high blood pressure.
What exactly is high blood pressure?
Also known as hypertension, high blood pressure is a condition wherein the pressure or force exerted by your blood against the walls of your arteries, is consistently too high.
Blood pressure readings are represented by two numbers: systolic blood pressure, or the top number, which shows the pressure in the arteries as the heart contracts, and diastolic pressure, or the bottom number, which shows the pressure in the arteries as the heart relaxes. Normal blood pressure is below 120/80.
How Common is High Blood Pressure?
High blood pressure is a commonly prevailing condition. It is estimated that nearly 30% of the residents of the UAE have high blood pressure. Due to the lack of any outward symptoms, there is also a high possibility that many are not even aware that they suffer from the condition.
The only way to know for sure is to have your blood pressure checked regularly as a part of your health check-ups, or even between check-ups just to ensure your reading is normal.
Know Your Numbers
Let’s take a quick look at what those blood pressure readings mean. We mentioned systolic and diastolic pressure above. Blood pressure readings are always represented as two values, such as 120/80, which indicates normal blood pressure levels.
Elevated blood pressure presents with a range of 120-129 mm Hg systolic and less than 80 mm Hg diastolic
High blood pressure or Hypertension Stage 1 presents with a range of 130-139 mm Hg systolic and 80-89 mm Hg diastolic
High blood pressure or Hypertension Stage 2 presents with a range of 140 mm Hg or higher systolic and 90 mm Hg or higher diastolic
High blood pressure or Hypertension Stage 3 presents with higher than 180 mm Hg systolic and higher than 120 mm Hg diastolic.
With these types of readings, you need to contact a physician right away.
Why Is High Blood Pressure Called a Silent Killer?
As the title of this article states, anybody could have high blood pressure and not know it. In most cases, high blood pressure does not present with any obvious symptoms. You could suffer from high blood pressure for a range of reasons including family history, ethnicity, age and other factors that are within your control such as smoking, physical inactivity, unhealthy diet and more. Here is a list of causes of high blood pressure for a greater understanding.
When consistently high blood pressure goes unchecked, over time, this causes damage to the walls of the arteries, takes a major toll on your overall circulatory system, and can even lead to a cardiovascular attack.
Managing High Blood Pressure
We’ll go on and repeat one of our favourite quotes here at Medoozle: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”. In this case, this most definitely holds true.
The first step is to see a medical professional and get screened to see if you do in fact have high blood pressure. If not, then you can take certain steps to keep it in check, such as adopting a healthy lifestyle and sticking to it.
However, if you do find that you have high blood pressure, you might be able to reverse or at least manage the condition with a few careful, consistent lifestyle changes – eat clean, include exercise into your daily routine, quit smoking if you smoke, and shed any extra weight if you are overweight.
So, our advice – if you haven’t been tested for blood pressure recently, then schedule a test soon. Once that is done, should you be on the higher end of the spectrum, you and your physician can devise a plan that will work towards managing your high blood pressure.
With the vast number of individuals in the UAE that are unaware of the fact they may very well be suffering from high blood pressure, you don’t want to be the next one to fall victim to this worldwide silent killer. Take charge, and take care!
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