Blood pressure and hypertension

Hypertension: Stay away from this silent killer!

Blood pressure and hypertension

Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is one of the most common lifestyle diseases in which the long-term force of the blood against artery walls is high enough to eventually cause heart disease or stroke. You probably have high blood pressure (hypertension) if your blood pressure readings are consistently 140 over 90 mmHg, or higher, over a number of weeks.

 

Fast Facts:

  • People with hypertension are three times more likely to develop heart disease and stroke and twice as likely to die from these when compared to people with a normal blood pressure.
  • One in three Indian adults have high blood pressure and approximately one-third of our population will suffer from it by 2020.

 

Hypertension Symptoms and Causes

Hypertension is a silent killer because it may have no visible symptoms for years. It can cause internal damage to the heart, lungs, blood vessels, brain, and kidneys. If the blood pressure has reached a severe stage, headaches, vision problems, shortness of breath or nosebleeds can occur.

There is no single cause of hypertension but lifestyle can affect the risk of developing it. The following factors increase your risk:

  • Eating too much salt
  • Not consuming enough fruit and vegetables
  • Not being physically active
  • Being overweight
  • Consuming too much alcohol

 

Complications of Hypertension

  • Heart attack or stroke: Hardening and thickening of the arteries (atherosclerosis), which can lead to a heart attack, stroke or other complications.
  • Aneurysms: Abnormal bulge in the wall of an artery due to increased pressure which can be life threatening if ruptures.
  • Kidney malfunction: Blood vessels in the kidneys narrow or weaken. This may cause kidney failure.
  • Vision loss: Blood vessels in the eyes thicken, get narrowed and might bleed. This may lead to vision changes or blindness.
  • Heart failure: Heart muscle thickens to pump blood against the higher pressure in the vessels and can lead to heart failure.

 

Treatment and Prevention

Lifestyle changes are the best way to prevent and manage hypertension:

  • Lose weight
  • Quit smoking
  • Eat a healthy diet
  • Reduce the amount of salt in your diet
  • Get regular aerobic exercise (such as brisk walking)
  • Limit alcohol (no more than 2 drinks per day for men, and 1 drink per day for women and persons 65 years and older)

 

DID YOU KNOW?

Approximately one-third of people with high blood pressure do not know that they have it!

Don’t wait until it’s too late! Avail a Preventive Health Check and stop
Hypertension in its tracks!

 

Sources:

  1. Mayoclinic. Accessed May 11, 2016.
  2. The Times of India. Accessed May 12, 2016.
  3. Blood Pressure UK. Accessed May 11, 2016.

Stop Malaria: Wipe Out the Mosquitoes!

Mosquitoes are responsible for causing more human suffering than any other organism. Malaria is a fatal disease caused by parasites transmitted to people through the bites of infected mosquitoes. Plasmodium is the parasite which infects female Anopheles mosquitoes, called malaria vectors and causes malaria in humans.

World Malaria Day is celebrated on 25th April to increase awareness about malaria and recognizing global efforts to control this disease.

Fast Facts:

  • According to the World Health Organization, about 3.2 billion people worldwide are at a risk of malaria.
  • Malaria claims nearly 1000 deaths every year in India.

 

Classical Symptoms

  • Fever occurring in four-to-eight hour cycles and sweats
  • Headache and body ache
  • Chills
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Fatigue

 

Complications

Infections can get complicated by organ failures and delay in treatment can lead to severe illness often leading to death. Following are the complications which can arise in various organs:

  • Breathing problems and acute respiratory distress syndrome
  • Severe anemia due to destruction of the red blood cells
  • Liver failure and jaundice
  • Fits, convulsions and loss of consciousness due to cerebral malaria
  • Abnormally low blood glucose
  • Acute kidney failure
  • Swelling and rupturing of the spleen

 

Prevention of Malaria

Controlling the transmission of the parasite by preventing mosquitoes bites is the most important step in preventing malaria:

  • Wear protective clothing when outdoors. Cover up with long-sleeved shirts, long trousers, tucked into socks and a hat if thin-haired.
  • Use effective insect repellents on skin and on clothing and reapply at regular intervals as prescribed.
  • If you are planning your travel, find out the risk of malaria in that area and take your doctor’s advice before visiting the place.
  • Arrange for undamaged, impregnated bed-nets to be used in sleeping areas not properly screened or air-conditioned.
  • Keep water containers covered and clean up old tires, cans, and barrels because standing water is the breeding place for the mosquitoes.

 

Management

The treatment of malaria depends on the type of parasite, severity of the symptoms, age and location of the patient and the pregnancy status of the female patient. Rapid diagnosis is very important for an effective treatment. Based on these factors, the doctor will prescribe antimalarial drugs like Chloroquine, Quinine sulphate, Quinine sulphate, or artemisinin-based combination therapy. Atovaquone-proguanil, doxycycline, or mefloquine are a few drugs used in India.

DID YOU KNOW?

A research vaccine against the malarial parasite (Plasmodium falciparum), known as RTS, S/AS01 is being evaluated in a large clinical trial conducted in 7 countries.

With Malaria, time is of the essence. Ensure a speedy recovery by having your medicines door-delivered, with MediBuddy!

 

Sources:

  1. World Health Organization. Accessed April 13, 2016.
  2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Accessed April 13, 2016.
  3. Mayoclinic. Accessed April 13, 2016.
  4. National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme. Accessed April 14, 2016.
  5. National Health Portal. Accessed April 14, 2016.

Welcome monsoon, not the diseases!

Monsoon diseases and prevention

After extreme heat during the summers, we look forward to the refreshing monsoon season. But this is also the time of the year when contagious infections are on the rise. Our body is more susceptible to health issues in the rainy season due to monsoon diseases. Warm, wet, and humid climate cause infections and water accumulation become possible breeding ground for many disease-causing organisms. This article will help you regarding your health concerns during monsoons.

Why is body susceptible to monsoon diseases?

Allergies and infections can happen due to reduced immunity.

  • High humidity can cause digestive problems, such as gastrointestinal disturbances, diarrhoea and dysentery.
  • Damp and filthy conditions play a host for many disease-causing germs which are responsible for dengue, malaria, conjunctivitis, typhoid, and viral fever.

Prevent yourself from monsoon-related illnesses:

  • Make drinking water safe by boiling, filtering and by using ultraviolet purifiers to ensure its purity.
  • Prevent stagnation of water near your house, storage tanks, flower pots, coolers, etc.
  • Soak your salads and leafy vegetables in salt water for about 10 minutes to remove germs.
  • Do not wear wet clothes for long to prevent fungal infections of the skin or nails.

Nutritional tips to keep your body resistant against diseases:

  • Improve your body’s immunity by adding a dash of garlic to the soups, stir fries and curries you make.
  • Instead of milk add yoghurt, curd, and almonds in your diet.
  • Brown rice, oats, and barley are the best foods this season.
  • Consume bitter gourd, neem, turmeric powder and methi seeds to prevent infections.
  • Avoid spicy and sour foods to prevent skin allergies and water retention.

Prevent monsoon diseases

Malaria: The most common disease of the rainy season can be prevented by using mosquito repellent and nets and by not allowing stagnation of water.

Cholera: Another deadly disease caused due to contaminated food, water and poor hygiene conditions can be prevented by maintaining hygiene, drinking purified water, avoiding street food and eating completely cooked food items.

Typhoid: Water-borne bacterial disease spread through contaminated food and water and can be prevented by avoiding raw foods, drinking untreated water and keeping oneself dehydrated.

Dengue: Another disease spread by mosquitoes which can be prevented by avoiding mosquito bites and not letting them breed.

Jaundice: The jaundice virus is spread through contaminated food/water. Avoiding street food and consuming boiled water can keep jaundice at bay.

Stomach Infection: This can cause severe vomiting, diarrhoea and stomach pain and can be prevented by drinking plenty of safe fluids and consuming uncontaminated foods.

Viral Fever: The most common condition causing constant sneezing, sore throat, cough and fever can be prevented by avoiding getting wet in the rain and seeing a doctor if the situation worsens.

Chikungunya: Transmitted by the bite of mosquitoes and can be prevented by cleaning water containers regularly and using insect repellents.

DID YOU KNOW?
It is advisable to wear nylon clothes during monsoons as clothes made of polyester and nylon are light and dry easily.

Keep a tab on your health this monsoon with a through diagnosis and treatment plan only on MediBuddy. Save upto 10%* on Consultation | Upto 22% off* on Pharmacy Orders

 

Sources:

  1. Mayoclinic. Accessed on July 12, 2016.
  2. India Infoline. Accessed on July 13, 2016.

Buraa na Maano, Holi Hai!

Holi, the festival of colours, brings back so many fond memories of our childhood. Remember how our mothers would warn us about safeguarding our eyes? And staying away from those troublesome boys who would smear everyone with those oh-so-difficult-to-remove silver and gold colours?

The kids would have heated debates on which colour should be added into the bucket first, which one for friends, and which ones for the rivals… Teenagers who would stay holed up inside their rooms lest the colours play havoc with their already troubled skin and hair.

And dads couldn’t wait for the kids to first have their share of fun in the early hours before the free flow of special sweets and savouries would begin followed by a hearty family lunch.

Holi and Health

In all, every fond memory of Holi revolves around two elements – choice and health care. Buraa na maano, but we’d like to tell you how you can make your Holi even more enjoyable with your health buddy, MediBuddy. Short of helping you get organic colours, which we strongly recommend that you use, and your mom’s magical recipes, you will find everything else you need on MediBuddy.

Care for your eyes, skin and hair? You will find a specialist doctor who can help you with specific answers that you may seek.

Have a question on managing your medication while you give in to the temptation of the food and sweets around you? Opt for an online consultation with a doctor for some quick tips.

Want a more comprehensive assessment of your health? Choose from a range of health screening packages offered by some of the leading hospitals and medical centres in your city.

And, why lose a minute during your family get together? Opt for doorstep delivery of medicines for the entire family.

Happy Holi, all! May you always be in the pink of health!

Do remember to check out the Offers page on MediBuddy to browse through
the special discounts available for you both during the festive season and year round.