From 6th to the 12th September it is “Know Your Numbers Week” which is trying to raise awareness of those individuals who may have high blood pressure but don’t even realise it. Lots of organisations will be taking part and will be setting up their own blood pressure monitoring stations in hospitals, health centres, offices, car parks and even supermarkets right across the UK.
With covid-19 being the primary NHS focus over the last 18months this week is meant to drive awareness about another forgotten pandemic – high blood pressure. There’s not always a need to visit your GP as there are quite a few inexpensive blood pressure monitoring machines on the market which can help to monitor your BP at home when you are most relaxed. Also your local chemist can check your blood pressure levels too and provide advice on a suitable monitoring machine for you to use. If you are a silent victim of high blood pressure, then this could be damaging your blood vessels and bring on other health conditions, such as a stroke or heart attack. So, get to know your numbers by checking your blood pressure levels regularly and if they are high, make an appointment with your GP.
What does the NHS class as high blood pressure?
Blood pressure is recorded with 2 numbers. The systolic pressure (higher number) is the force at which your heart pumps blood around your body.
The diastolic pressure (lower number) is the resistance to the blood flow in the blood vessels.
They’re both measured in millimetres of mercury (mmHg).
As a general guide:
• high blood pressure is considered to be 140/90mmHg or higher (or 150/90mmHg or higher if you’re over the age of 80)
• ideal blood pressure is usually considered to be between 90/60mmHg and 120/80mmHg
Blood pressure readings between 120/80mmHg and 140/90mmHg could mean you’re at risk of developing high blood pressure if you do not take steps to keep your blood pressure under control.
Everyone’s blood pressure will be slightly different. What’s considered low or high for you may be normal for someone else. To find out more go to the NHS website here