The Israel Hypertension Society is worried that news of the global economic crisis, growing unemployment and loss of pensions will trigger high blood pressure among Israelis. At its annual conference last week, hypertension experts urged people to get their blood pressure checked and get treatment if necessary. Dr. Yehonatan Sharabi, director of the hypertension institute at Sheba Medical Center and a member of the society's executive body, said that the connection between crisis and the resultant stress, and a rise in high blood pressure was well known. Therefore, patients and their doctors should monitor blood pressure levels. This can be done at home using simple digital devices. Hypertension can be treated with dietary changes, physical activity and medications. "Many people internalize their distress," said Sharabi, and this could cause blood pressure to rise. Normal blood pressure is 120/80. A quarter of the country's population - 1.75 million people - suffer from hypertension to some degree. Untreated and continuing over time, this "silent killer" can lead to stroke, heart attacks, aneurysms and vision and kidney problems.