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Free local blood pressure checks for awareness campaign

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Knowle West residents can have their blood pressure checked for free at a local ‘pressure station’ from 12-18 September – as part of a national awareness campaign.

Public Health Bristol is supporting Blood Pressure UK with their yearly campaign this month by encouraging residents of the city to “Know Your Numbers! Know Your Risks!”

In South Bristol around 20,489 people are living with high blood pressure (hypertension) – one of the leading risk factors for premature death, and disability as well as kidney disease and dementia.

It is also a leading cause of cardiovascular disease (CVD) (including coronary heart disease and stroke) which is the second main cause of early death in the city.

Jess Waithe, Advanced Health Improvement Practitioner – Adults (Lifestyle) for Public Health Bristol says every adult needs to “know their numbers” and have their blood pressure checked at least every five years.

 She explains: “High blood pressure is such an important issue in Bristol and this campaign is a great opportunity to help prevent it and the possible health consequences.

“High blood pressure has no symptoms, those who may be at risk may not know if they have high blood pressure and the only way to know is to have it checked.”

People at greater risk are aged 65 years and above and those from an Afro-Caribbean or South Asian heritage – and yearly checks are recommended.

Hypertension is often preventable – and people with blood pressure currently in the ‘normal’ range could reduce their future risk of cardiovascular disease by lowering their blood pressure still.

Ways to do that include cutting down on salt, eating a healthy balanced diet and drinking alcohol in moderation as well as regular physical activity and keeping to a healthy weight.

Free pressure stations in South Bristol from 12 – 18 September are:

         Badhams Pharmacy, 45 Filwood Broadway, BS4 1JL

         Bedminster Pharmacy, 4-6 Canon Street, BS3 1BN

         Hartliffe Health Centre, Hareclive Rd, BS13 0JP

         Withywood Pharmacy, 94 Queen’s Rd, BS13 8PQ

For more information about the campaign visit: www.bloodpressureuk.org