Know Your Numbers! Week 7th-13th September 2020
This week sees the return of the annual Know Your Numbers! Week, the nation’s biggest blood pressure testing and awareness raising campaign. The campaign encourages people to know their blood pressure readings and make the necessary lifestyle changes to reach and maintain a healthy blood pressure.
What is blood pressure?
Blood pressure is the pressure your heart uses to push blood through your vessels and round your body. There are two numbers used to describe blood pressure, the first number called systolic is the amount of pressure your heart uses to push the blood round when your heart is beating. The second number called diastolic is the pressure when your heart is relaxed between beats.
What causes high blood pressure?
There is no single cause of high blood pressure, but there are some things that can put you at greater risk. These are called risk factors and having diabetes is one of these. Other risk factors include:
- Family history of high blood pressure
- If you are from African-Caribbean or Black African ethnicity
- Too much salt in your diet
- Being overweight
- Not being active
- Drinking too much alcohol
Why is it important to control your blood pressure?
High blood pressure also known as hypertension is sometimes called the silent problem as you don’t normally experience any symptoms. Having hypertension can put you at a greater risk of having a heart attack of stroke.
Getting your blood pressure tested
During Know Your Numbers week! you are normally encouraged to go and have your blood pressure checked for free, however due to the current coronavirus pandemic this year people are being encouraged to use a simple and reliable blood pressure monitor to measure their blood pressure at home. Home monitoring offers a way for you to take control of your health, feel confident, and take the pressure off the NHS at the same time. It gives you a practical way to know your numbers without visiting their GP or Pharmacist, and it can save lives. Speak to your Pharmacist about the best home blood pressure monitors to use.
Where can I find out more?