With the busy pace of life, getting your blood pressure checked regularly probably isn’t anywhere near the top of your to-do list. But for something that takes such a small amount of time, a blood pressure check can make a huge impact on your life.
Keen to know more about your blood pressure? Here are 5 things you may not have known before!
1. Feeling fine isn’t enough.
The expectation that if something is wrong, our bodies will tell us. But when it comes to blood pressure, that couldn’t be further from the truth. While some people might experience headaches, many will have very high blood pressure for a long time with no symptoms at all. That’s why regular checks – even when you feel well – are so important.
2. Weight is a factor.
As with many other health conditions, carrying a few extra kilos usually has a negative impact on your blood pressure. The good news is that even small changes, such as losing 2 kilos and getting some more activity, can make a big difference to your blood pressure (as well as your overall health!).
3. Time is a factor.
Make sure you’re not getting your blood pressure tested at a time when it would be overly high – for example, right after exercise. Measuring your blood pressure is about knowing what the figures are likely to be for most of the time. The best time to test is usually early in the day when you’re relaxed and hopefully well rested.
4. Both readings matter.
Many will know that blood pressure is made up of two readings (e.g. 120/80). The first number is the systolic, or the pressure in your blood vessels on the heartbeat. The second is the diastolic, or the pressure in your vessels when the heart rests. If one figure is elevated (>120 for systolic, >80 for diastolic) then even if the other is fine, you may still need to follow it up with your GP.
5. It’s one of the quickest and easiest ways to get an indicator of the health of your heart.
Over time, factors such as age, cholesterol, lack of exercise and smoking can have an impact on our arteries and our heart. With cardiovascular disease still the number one killer of Australians, the sooner you know – the better.
You don’t need to go out of your way to get your blood pressure checked, either! We conduct them at all TerryWhite Chemmart pharmacies, completely free of charge, and you can easily book your blood pressure check online at a time most suited to you. Your pharmacist will then talk through your results and provide advice that may assist in improving your heart’s health.