Could YOU be the one in three at risk of the silent killer

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Could YOU be the one in three at risk of the silent killer?
06/09/2009

Could you YOU be the one in three? – that’s what UK charity the Blood Pressure Association is asking adults across the nation as it launches the UK’s biggest blood pressure testing event, Know your Numbers! Week (Monday 7 - Sunday 13 September).

High blood pressure affects a third of UK adults.

Uncontrolled high blood pressure is the biggest cause of strokes and a major cause of heart disease and kidney disease.

Yet one in three have no idea they have the condition because it's symptomless. That’s why it’s called the ‘silent killer’.

During last year’s Know your Numbers! Week, 72 per cent of people tested did not know their blood pressure numbers, yet 38 per cent were found to have high blood pressure readings.

To help tackle this, during Know your Numbers! Week 2009, around 1,500 venues known as Pressure Stations, will be offering free blood pressure checks at community and workplace venues nationwide. Pressure Stations venues range from train stations, shopping centres and street markets to bus garages and an oil rig in Scotland.

Mike Rich, Executive Director of the Blood Pressure Association, said: "We want to save the thousands of lives lost each year to stroke and heart attack caused by high blood pressure.

“That’s why we are working with health professionals across the country to offer free, convenient and painless blood pressure checks during Know your Numbers! Week. The good news is that once detected, there's lots you can do to lower your blood pressure, and your risk of stroke and heart attack. So make sure you don’t miss your free check and take that first step to lifelong healthy blood pressure.”

To find our where you can get your free blood pressure check, visit the Blood Pressure Association’s website www.bpassoc.org.uk/kyn where you can type in your nearest town or postcode to find your nearest Pressure Station or call the Blood Pressure Association on 020 8772 4994.

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 (11am-3pm, Mon-Fri).


More on Know your Numbers! Week 2009

Find out more about the UK's biggest free blood pressure testing event:

Notes to Editors:

  • For more information on Know your Numbers! Week or on high blood pressure, contact the Blood Pressure Association’s Press Office on 020 8772 4993/4984 or 07961 154077 or email acureton@sgul.ac.uk or smassey@sgul.ac.uk
  • The Blood Pressure Association is the UK’s leading blood pressure charity working to lower the nation’s blood pressure. The charity provides information and support for people with high blood pressure and raises awareness to prevent the condition.  For more information visit the charity’s main website at http://www.bpassoc.org.uk/, call head office on 020 8772 4994 or contact our 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 kidney disease and vascular dementia.
  • 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.
  • 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’:

  1. Cut down on salt – don’t add it when cooking or at the table and check food labels to make sure you don’t eat more than 6g a day
  2. Eat plenty of fruit and vegetables – at least five different portions every day
  3. Watch your weight – try to reach the right weight for your height
  4. Exercise regularly – that doesn’t have to mean the gym, how about a regular lunchtime walk? 30 minutes five times a week is ideal
  5. Drink alcohol in moderation – no more than 3-4 units a day for men and no more than 2-3 units for women (a pint of normal strength beer = 2 units, a medium glass of wine = 2 units).

More on how to lower your blood pressure

Topics: BPA in the news, High Blood Pressure in the news, Lifestyle, Measurement, High blood pressure


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