What is blood pressure? Blood pressure means the pressure of the blood in your arteries – the tubes that take blood away from your heart to the rest of your body. A certain amount of pressure is needed to keep the blood flowing. However, if your blood pressure is high, you can damage the blood vessels in your body.
Why is high blood pressure dangerous? High blood pressure (also known as hypertension) is a major cause of heart disease and strokes. Nearly one in three adults in the UK have high blood pressure. Over a third of those people with high blood pressure are currently not being treated – thereby putting their health at risk.
High blood pressure rarely makes people feel ill. However, the higher your blood pressure, the greater your risk of developing narrowed arteries and the shorter your life expectancy. People with high blood pressure have an increased risk of having a heart attack or a stroke. If not treated effectively, high blood pressure can also lead to kidney disease, dementia and eyesight problems.
The risk factors
Lack of exercise
High salt intake
High alcohol intake (daily limit for women is 2-3 units, and
3-4 units for men)
People of Asian or African-Caribbean descent
Family history of high blood pressure
Previous heart attack/stroke, diabetes or renal disease
How is high blood pressure identified? High blood pressure rarely makes people feel ill. In a tiny number of people, it can cause headaches but only if blood pressure is very high. However, the only reliable method of knowing whether you have high blood pressure is to have it measured.
How we can help? To get your blood pressure checked, call into our pharmacy and speak to one of our pharmacists and they’ll be happy to answer any questions you have. Your pharmacist will take care of the rest. The blood pressure check shouldn’t take any longer than ten minutes.
Once your pharmacist has completed your check they’ll explain your results and give you any advice you need about high or low blood pressure, or how to maintain a healthy blood pressure and lifestyle.
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