Hypertension: A personal account
Many people are hypertensive but do not know it because sometimes there are no symptoms of this disease. That is why it is often called the "silent killer".
I (name withheld) was diagnosed with high blood pressure over five years ago during a regular visit to the doctor. I was told that I have Stage One Hypertension and prescribed Amlodipine and Atenolol which I take on a daily basis.
I am aware when my pressure is high when I begin to feel light-headed or have headaches. My blood pressure increases when I don't take my medication or when I am under stress.
I learnt that hypertension is the result of poor lifestyle choices and genetics.
My diet consists of little fat. I include lots of vegetables, fruits and have reduced my sodium intake. I also exercise (brisk walking) four times a week for 45 minutes at a time. There are different types of hypertension.
I advise others to have regular blood checks, especially if they are overweight/obese, are of African descent or have a family history of high blood pressure.
I have learnt that hypertension can be avoided and controlled by the change in our lifestyle.