Suffering from high BP? Don’t take work stress lightly

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London, April 28 (IANS) If you are finding it hard to deal with the pressure at the workplace, there is more reason to worry. New research has found that work stress and impaired sleep are linked to a threefold higher risk of cardiovascular death in employees with hypertension.

“Sleep should be a time for recreation, unwinding, and restoring energy levels. If you have stress at work, sleep helps you recover,” said study author Karl-Heinz Ladwig, Professor at Technical University of Munich, Germany.

“Unfortunately poor sleep and job stress often go hand in hand, and when combined with hypertension the effect is even more toxic,” Ladwig said.

The study included around 2,000 hypertensive workers aged 25-65, without cardiovascular disease or diabetes.

Compared to those with no work stress and good sleep, people with both risk factors had a three times greater likelihood of death from cardiovascular disease, showed the findings published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology.

People with work stress alone had a 1.6-fold higher risk while those with only poor sleep had a 1.8-times higher risk, the study said.

In the study, work stress was defined as jobs with high demand and low control — for example when an employer wants results but denies authority to make decisions.

“If you have high demands but also high control, in other words you can make decisions, this may even be positive for health,” said Ladwig.

“But being entrapped in a pressured situation that you have no power to change is harmful,” Ladwig added.

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