The Department of Health and Family Welfare on Sunday observed World Health Day, albeit on a small scale owing to the poll code of conduct which has been put in place.

Following the theme set by the World Health Organisation — Blood Pressure or Hypertension, the programme for the day started off with a blood pressure camp.

Inaugurating the event, Principal Secretary, Department of Health and Family Welfare, M. Madan Gopal, said, “Urbanisation and unplanned growth is one of the main contributing factors for hypertension.

“Even the daily ride to office is turning out to be a painful experience.

“That aside, with leisure time getting commercialised, only a small fraction of society heads out to parks and lakes for a relaxing walk. In addition to these, unhealthy habits such as overindulging on junk food and untimely eating habits are only compounding the issue of hypertension.”

Stressing that hypertension is mainly a lifestyle disorder, he said that the only way to avoid it is by starting early.

“One cannot hope to cure oneself by taking up yoga or other preventive medicines after acquiring the disorder,” he noted.

P. Satish Chandra, Director, National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro Sciences (NIMHANS), Bangalore, spoke on the importance of the golden hour, within which patients of stroke must be given medical attention.

He added that paralysis following a stroke can be prevented with medical help at the right time.

R. Premalatha, director, Indira Gandhi Institute of Child Health, Bangalore, said that even children are prone to lifestyle disorders such as hypertension and advised parents to get their children tested for blood pressure, at least on a yearly basis.

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