Awareness and preventive practices related to hypertension among government school teachers in rural Tamil Nadu
Keywords:Hypertension, awareness, stress, teachers and preventive practices
Background: Being in the stressful profession of teaching, awareness about hypertension is very important in the prevention and early detection of hypertension and thereby reducing its morbidity and mortality. Objectives: 1) To assess the awareness of risk factors, symptoms and complications of hypertension among government school teachers. 2) To find out the preventive practices related to hypertension among government school teachers. Methods: A cross sectional study was carried out among 103 government school teachers with pre tested semi-structured questionnaire at Nandhivaram town of Kancheepuram district in Tamil Nadu. This study was done between August to October 2013. Results: Only 7.8% of the participants had high awareness score on hypertension. Prevalence of smoking among school teachers was found to be 2.92% (95% confidence interval -0.34 to 6.14%). About 19.41% were doing one or other form of physical activity in our study. Most of the participants (92.2%) checked their blood pressure at least once in the past and 37.9% were cautious about their daily salt intake. Conclusion: Most of the participants were not aware of effect and complications of hypertension and the preventive practices were low despite being teachers. Efforts should be made to implement comprehensive public health awareness programs to highlight the facts regarding hypertension and importance of lifestyle modifications.
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