Behavioral model of blood pressure control in hypertensive clients

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Illustration by dokter sehat

Hypertension is called “the silent disease” because there are no signs or symptoms that can damage blood vessels and cause health problems. Control of blood pressure in hypertension is still an important health problem and finding strategies to overcome it is a challenge.

Several studies from several countries show that hypertension client awareness regarding blood pressure control is still very low. Efforts to prevent and control hypertension must begin by raising public awareness and making lifestyle changes towards a healthier one. To understand and practice the right lifestyle and avoid disease, individuals and society need to have the right behavior.

The results showed that blood pressure control behavior was influenced by education, work, stress level, personality, level of knowledge, family support, the role of health workers, individual beliefs, and cognitive processes (perception, learning, judgment and emotions).

Hypertensive clients with low levels of education and lack of knowledge are difficult to understand hypertension and how to control blood pressure. Clients who have jobs have better blood pressure control behaviors because of a better economic status making it easy to get health services and treatment options. Hypertensive clients with high stress levels result in changes in unhealthy lifestyles that make them unable to control their blood pressure properly.

Hypertensive clients with introverted personalities are more likely to adhere to treatment than extroverted personalities. This is because hypertensive clients with extroverted personalities tend to direct themselves toward the environment rather than themselves, thus making them more likely to follow changes in their environment, both with or without negative impact on their health. In addition, people with introverted personalities also prefer to study on their own than people with extroverted personalities who need more support from others.

The low role of health workers and family support for hypertensive clients can cause clients to have poor self-management behavior. Health workers need to approach clients and families holistically and psychosocially to be able to assist clients in controlling blood pressure. Family support is also one of the important strategies in improving the behavior of hypertensive clients to control blood pressure by playing an active role in helping clients managing diet, activity, medication and blood pressure checks.

Hypertensive client awareness about the disease is also still low. They still think that hypertension is a harmless disease, lack of understanding of the benefits of treatment, high barriers to controlling blood pressure, for example due to time problems or feeling lazy. Individuals who believe that they are at low risk of disease are more likely to engage in unhealthy, or risky behavior. An individual will tend to adopt healthy behaviors when he believes that new behaviors will reduce their risk of developing a disease.

Low awareness of the disease makes it difficult for clients to be able to control their blood pressure. Difficult to change the quality of behavior and overcome obstacles in controlling blood pressure are things that affect hypertensive clients to maintain blood pressure in a stable condition. Improvement of hypertensive client behavior can be done by counseling from health workers and involving the client and family in the decision making process related to their care.

Author: GratsiaViktoria Fernandez & Ika Yuni Widyawati

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Media komunikasi dan informasi seputar kampus Universitas Airlangga (Unair).

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