Hypertension is a preventable and controllable disease. May 17 is celebrated as World Hypertension Day every year in order to inform and raise awareness about the prevention of nervous system diseases such as kidney disease, heart disease and stroke caused by hypertension.
WHAT IS HYPERTENSION?
Blood pressure is the pressure the heart creates on the vessel wall as it pumps blood. It is expressed in millimeters of mercury (mmHg). If it is above the desired values, it is defined as hypertension. The pressure created by the heart when pumping blood is called systolic blood pressure, and the pressure created when blood stops pumping is called diastolic blood pressure. Normal blood pressure is 120/80 mmHg. (According to the 2017 American Hypertension Guidelines). Average of house measurements; High blood pressure is mentioned if it is 135/85 mmHg, and the average of hospital measurements is 140/90 mmHg.
IS HYPERTENSION A COMMON DISEASE?
In Turkey, 49% of adult men over the age of 28 and 56% of adult women are hypertensive. It is known that there are approximately 17 million hypertension patients in Turkey. Unfortunately, half of hypertensive patients do not know their blood pressure. Half of those who know their blood pressure do not get treatment. The blood pressure of half of those treated is not regulated. The rate of hypertensive whose blood pressure is regulated is 6%. For this reason, the society should be made aware of hypertension and we should be informed by the health personnel.
WHAT ARE THE CAUSES OF HYPERTENSION?
High blood pressure can have many causes. These are genetics, gender, diabetes, obesity, smoking and alcohol use, stress, sedentary life, excessive salt use, unhealthy diet and old age. Sometimes hypertension can be seen in kidney diseases, hormonal diseases and pregnancy. If it is due to a certain disease, it is called secondary hypertension, if there is no underlying disease, it is called primary hypertension or essential hypertension. As age progresses, it begins to be seen more frequently with the decrease in the flexibility of the vessel wall. If hypertension is detected before the age of 20, it should be investigated for an underlying disease.
HOW TO PREVENT THE DEVELOPMENT OF HYPERTENSION?
Quitting alcohol and smoking, healthy eating, regular exercise, reducing salt consumption, and losing weight if overweight can prevent or delay the development of high blood pressure.
WHY IS HYPERTENSION A DANGEROUS DISEASE?
High blood pressure disrupts the vascular structure. Veins are also found in all our organs. For this reason, if blood pressure is not controlled, all our organs will be damaged and irreversible conditions called target organ damage occur. There may be heart diseases such as cardiovascular disease, heart attack, heart failure. If brain vessels are affected, acute cerebral hemorrhage, stroke, stroke, and in chronic cases, dementia and memory problems may occur due to insufficient nutrition of the brain tissue. May cause kidney failure. Congestion may occur in the leg veins. If the eye vessels are affected, bleeding into the eye and visual impairment may occur. Sexual dysfunction can be seen in both sexes.
When all these are taken into consideration, we see that hypertension is a serious preventable disease. For this reason, we should pay attention to the follow-up of the disease with regular examinations and tests, and we should use the drugs at the recommended dose and time, without interruption. We should measure our blood pressure at least once a year and be aware of our blood pressure. If we have been diagnosed with hypertension, we should not neglect regular doctor checks at the intervals recommended by our doctor. So happy World Hypertension Day.