- On World Hypertension Day, doctors at RAK Hospital remind patients not to be too stressed about the situation, avoid panic, and find new activities to learn.
- Focus on lifestyle changes and building a strong immune system to fight COVID 19; those who are fasting should take their medicine after Iftar.
May 16th, 2020; Ras Al Khaimah, UAE: Hypertensive patients suffering from anxiety due to Covid-19 pandemic should make a conscious effort not to stress over the situation, but instead opt for relaxation exercises and experiment with new activities. To drive the point home, RAK Hospital has organized a Facebook Live session on World Hypertension Day, titled, ‘Manage hypertension in this pandemic', the session will advise people on different ways to reduce stress levels during these trying times.
The 30-minutes live session – to be conducted by Dr. Elhadi Eltayeb Abbas, Consultant-Internal Medicine at RAK Hospital – will be held between 12:15 pm and 12:45 pm on Sunday, May 17th, 2020.
“While there are no conclusive studies of any strong links between hypertension and Covid-19, some researches do say that, because the condition impacts the heart, such patients are at higher risk. Having said that, it does not help to worry about it, and the best service hypertensive patients can do for themselves is to remain calm and avoid panic,” suggests Dr. Elhadi.
Dr. Arun Goyal, Medical Director at RAK Hospital adds: “I believe at this point it is more important that patients focus on making lifestyle changes and building their immune system stronger. Go easy on fatty foods, limit salt intake, and most importantly, don't skip your medicine. For those who're fasting, post-Iftar is a good time to take medicine since that will help to keep blood pressure under control and help avoid complications. Use devices to monitor the blood pressure at home”.
Worldwide news reports reflect a rise in anxiety levels as people attempt to grapple with the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic. A recent report in the UAE has warned residents of the after-effects of anti-depressants fearing a rise in the use of the medication. The UAE has also launched a nation-wide drive to boost mental health.
“These are challenging times for all of us and more so for patients suffering from chronic diseases,” added Dr. Raza Siddiqui, Executive Director at RAK Hospital, “On World Hypertension Day, we would like to remind patients suffering from the condition to relax, take a deep breath and try to clinically detach themselves from the current scenario. They should also follow the regular medical guidelines more astutely than ever to maintain their blood pressure under normal levels and monitor their health closely on a regular basis. More importantly, like everyone else, they need to adhere to the Ministry guidelines of social distancing and keeping safe since they are more vulnerable to catching the virus than others.”
Doctor's advice to hypertensive patients:
• Don't panic: Stress is one of the major factors behind binge eating (leading to obesity), diabetes, cardiac problems, and other chronic health issues. These conditions can make people vulnerable to complications caused by Covid-19.
• Take medication regularly: Make sure that you take your medicine on time as prescribed by your doctor. This is arguably the key to keeping blood pressure under control and avoiding serious health conditions such as heart and kidney failure.
• Do restorative and relaxing exercises: Becoming more active will lower your systolic blood pressure and make your heart strong enough to pump more blood with less effort. This will also help to release stress and induce a positive physical and mental state.
• Monitor blood pressure regularly: In these challenging times when hospital visits are best avoided, prevention is definitely better than cure. By regularly monitoring blood pressure, patients can keep the levels in check and take appropriate and timely measures if they fluctuate before getting out of control.