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What is your Blood Pressure?

Posted Sep 13 2011 9:36am

Most adults in the UK have blood pressureThe pressure of blood within the arteries. readings in the range from 120 over 80 (120/80) to 140 over 90 (140/90).The first point is that the 'ideal' bloodA fluid that transports oxygen and other substances through the body, made up of blood cells suspended in a liquid. pressure for one person may be different for another. However, blood pressures that fall outside the normal range of 120 over 80 (120/80) can be indicative of disease.

Generally speaking, we should all ideally have a blood pressure below 120 over 80 (120/80). At this level there is a demonstrably lower risk of heart disease or strokeAny sudden neurological problem caused by a bleed or a clot in a blood vessel.. If your blood pressure is above 120/80mmHg, you will need to take steps to bring the pressure down.

UK charity the Blood Pressure Association is has arranged for health professionals in Oxfordfordshire to offer free blood pressure checks at a variety of convenient venues or ‘Pressure Stations’ in the area. During last year’s Know your Numbers! Week, 69% of people tested in Oxfordshire didn't know their blood presure numbers and 44% had high blood pressure readings.

Almost 1,500 Pressure Stations are being held nationwide, with venues in high street and supermarket pharmacies, shopping centres, markets, sports centres and other popular community venues. 1 in 3 adults has high blood pressure and a third of them have no idea as it has no symptoms. That’s around 5 million people whose lives are actually at risk because they don’t know their numbers.

High blood pressure nearly always has no symptoms and for many people is ‘out of sight and out of mind’, but its effects can be devastating. It is the UK ’s biggest silent killer, being responsible for 60% of strokes and 40% of heart attacks. If it is detected though, it can be successfully managed.

Adults should know their blood pressure numbers in the same way they know their height and weight and the only way to find out what they are is to have a blood pressure check. Free checks will be available to all adults.

A quick, painless test can mean the difference between life and death or serious disability.

Pressure Stations in Oxfordshire include (search at www.bpassoc.org.uk/kyn for pharmacy opening hours):

  • Trident Training, Trident Business Park, Didcot, Oxfordshire
  • Mid-Counties Co-operative pharmacy, Unit 5 Barberry Place, Bicester Oxon, OX26 3HA
  • Lifestyles Gym & PT studio with Therapy Rooms, W10 Innovation Centre, Howbery Park, Benson Lane, Wallingford, OX10 8BA
  • Mid-Counties Co-operative pharmacy, Market Street, Charlbury, Oxon, OX7 3PL
  • SANBOL LTD, T/A FARINGDON PHARMACY, 28A LONDON STREET, FARINGDON , OXFORDSHIRE, SN7 7AA

For an entire list of Pressure Stations in Oxfordshire and to find your nearest, visit: www.bpassoc.org.uk/kyn

Paul Newman, Chief Executive of the Blood Pressure Association, says,

“We are delighted so many organisations are taking part in Know your Numbers! Week 2011. Everyone that takes part helps to emphasise the importance of knowing your blood pressure numbers and by offering the free checks could really be saving lives.”

If you have a question about high blood pressure and would like to speak to someone over the phone, call the Blood Pressure Association’s Information Line on 0845 241 0989.

Facts about blood pressure from UK charity the Blood Pressure Association:

  • One in three adults in the UK – 16 million – has high blood pressure. A third of these (5 million) don’t know they have the condition.
  • High blood pressure has no obvious signs or symptoms. The only way to find out if you have the condition is to have a blood pressure check.
  • Untreated high blood pressure is the major risk factor for stroke and heart attack. It is also a risk factor for heart and kidneyOne of two bean-shaped organs that are located on either side of the body, below the ribcage. The main role of the kidneys is to filter out waste products from the blood. disease and vascular dementiaA form of dementia caused by impaired blood supply to the brain..
  • A healthy blood pressure is a level of 120/80mmHg or less. If readings are consistently at or above 140/90mmHg, high blood pressure is diagnosed, and action should be taken to lower it.  
  • Although sufferers may feel healthy, uncontrolled high blood pressure can progressively damage their vital organs.
  • You can lower your blood pressure by having a healthier lifestyle, and, if necessary, by taking medication as directed by your doctor.

The Blood Pressure Association’s ‘Top five tips for a healthy blood pressure’:

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