World Hypertension Day might sound like an intensely stressful day, one which could actually cause high blood pressure! But this day is, in fact, an educational event, designed to prevent instances of hypertension. It is certainly meant to be a good thing and not a stressful one!
History of World Hypertension Day
Established by the World Hypertension League (WHL) in 2005, World Hypertension Day is intended to increase people’s awareness about the condition of high blood pressure and the various issues that can surround it.
Awareness of hypertension is considered to be a vitally important sign of disease in today’s world, as it is associated with a large number of deaths around the world each year, especially those linked with heart attacks, kidney disease and strokes. Even though it is linked to so many diseases, there seems to be a perceived lack of awareness about hypertension amongst the general public, which the WHL hopes to change.
World Hypertension Day usually takes on a specific theme, one that changes each year based on the current focus. For example, in the past, one of the themes was ‘Healthy diet, healthy blood pressure’. This theme aimed to improve the average person’s understanding of how eating poorly can contribute to high blood pressure and how a more healthy diet can help to rectify the problem.
Other annual themes have included “Awareness of high blood pressure” or “Treat to goal”. But whatever the chosen theme for the day, it’s sure to ring true with education and taking action, as well as preventing disease and death through awareness. So get ready to observe World Hypertension Day!
How to Observe World Hypertension Day
While perhaps it’s not the same kind of day as one where the family gathers around the table for a big meal decorated with balloons and streamers, World Hypertension Day is an extremely important one for the life and health of families.
It can be super easy to get involved with celebrating World Hypertension Day in some of these ways:
Get a Blood Pressure Check
Many people don’t exactly understand why the doctor puts that squeezy cuff on their arm when they visit, but this measurement of a patient’s blood pressure is vital. And in many places, the blood pressure can also often be checked for free at various pharmacies or walk-in clinics that offer an automated machine.
For the general population, blood pressure is considered to be high if it comes in at anything over 140/90 and 130/80 for those with diabetes, kidney disease or other underlying conditions. Of course, it is necessary to check with a doctor about this number.
Learn More About Hypertension
Even if a machine is used to check the blood pressure, many folks don’t really have a framework of information to help them interpret their results or what to do about it. Here are some things to know about hypertension:
Hypertension may not have any symptoms, so most people don’t know that they have it.
Hundreds of thousands of deaths each year are linked to hypertension.
High blood pressure may be linked to dementia or other mental health issues.
Only about 1 in 4 adults with hypertension in the US have their condition under control.
Talk to Your Doctor About Hypertension
Those who are concerned that their blood pressure may be on the high side should certainly make an appointment to visit their general practitioner to get a screening and voice concerns. People who have a family history of hypertension should also be more aware that this is a risk factor to pay attention to.
The doctor will perform an assessment, perhaps to see if there is an underlying cause or condition for this. Those who have chronic hypertension may need to be medicated or have some other form of treatment to help maintain their health and prevent other problems with disease.
So join in, test that blood pressure, learn about hypertension and stay healthy for many years to come!