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Hypertension/High Blood Pressure and You

Health • by Paul De Beyer • 25 August 2021


There’s a silent killer moving among us. It strikes without prejudice, going after men and women of almost any adult age. In fact, almost half the adult, South African population are currently in its crosshairs.

Hypertension is its name, and it's not taking any prisoners.

What is hypertension?

Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is when your blood exerts too much force against the walls of your blood vessels, causing damage. It’s estimated that over a billion people worldwide suffer from it.

How do I spot it?

The easiest and simplest way to spot if you have high blood pressure is to get tested regularly. A simple assessment by a nurse, pharmacist or doctor will be able to tell very quickly if you’re suffering from hypertension.

Here are a few common indicators that show that you might have hypertension:

At GetSavvi Health, we’re committed to helping our members stay healthy. This is why we offer FeelBetterFast benefits on all of our plans, where you can go for a blood pressure test.

Simply contact our Claims Team on 0861 18 92 02, where you’ll be directed to your closest network pharmacy and sent an electronic voucher via your cell phone. Present the voucher to the nurse or pharmacist and get your free blood pressure test.

But why is hypertension so dangerous?

Simply put, the pressure your own blood puts on major blood vessels, like the arteries in your heart, can have catastrophic consequences.

The complications caused by high blood pressure include:

Almost all of these complications can result in death.

What causes high blood pressure and how can I avoid it?

High blood pressure is caused by poor diet, genetics, lack of exercise and stress. You can help prevent it through proper diet, regular exercise, avoiding tobacco use, reducing alcohol intake, and cutting down on high-fat foods.

Stress is also a contributing factor, especially if one was to self-medicate with food, alcohol or drugs. If you feel like you’re suffering from stress, especially stress that might be related to a traumatic event, all GetSavvi Health members have free access to 24/7 accredited, trained counsellors through HIV, Trauma and Assault Counselling Benefits. If you need help, please do not hesitate to reach out.

Can you be treated for hypertension?

Prevention is, as always, better than cure. However, direct treatment can be done through chronic medication, which, as a GetSavvi Health member, would be covered by your Day-to-day Benefits. Hypertension medication can be collected from selected pharmacies.

References:
The struggle for hypertension in South Africa
Effects of High Blood Pressure on Your Body
High blood pressure dangers: Hypertension's effects on your body
The Effects of Hypertension on the Body
Everything you need to know about hypertension
High blood pressure (hypertension)

Hypertension

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