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How frequently should adults check their BP levels?

How frequently should adults check their BP levels?

New Delhi: Doctors advise that adults from the age group of 18 to 40 must check their blood pressure levels every three years to diagnose diseases earlier and start treatment if needed, IANS reported.

According to a recent study by the Indian Council of Medical Research-National Centre for Disease Informatics and Research (ICMR-NCDIR), about 30% of Indians have never tested their blood pressure.

"People older than 40 should have their blood pressure checked one time a year. Those between 18 and 40 should get their blood pressure checked every three to five years unless they fall into the high-risk category," Dr Tushar Tayal, Lead Consultant, Department of Internal Medicine, CK Birla Hospital, Gurugram, told IANS.

"All hypertensive patients should monitor blood pressure at least once monthly with a digital BP monitor, ideally after 15 mins of rest and cuff tied to mid-arm," added Dr Ajay Agarwal - Director, Internal Medicine, Fortis Hospital, Noida.

He explained that in patients without risk factors, blood pressure must be below 140/90 mm Hg. Among those with risk factors such as diabetes or kidney disease to reduce the risk of target organ damage (in kidneys, heart, or eyes), it should be less than 130/80, Dr Ajay told IANS.

The study also showed that about 34% of Indians are in the prehypertensive stage -- an intermediate state between normal blood pressure and hypertension.

The research showed it is equally concerning, as it contributed substantially to cardiovascular diseases.

"It is important to check BP and keep it under control (with or without medication) because undiagnosed hypertension is a risk factor for stroke, heart attack, kidney damage, and eye damage," Dr Tayal said.

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