BP – Why it’s important to monitor!

February 1, 2012

BP Blood pressure is the pressure of the blood in your arteries as it is pumped around the body by the heart delivering oxygen and nutrients to our cells.  As the heart pumps, blood rises and falls in waves.

An unhealthy lifestyle or too much stress can lead to high blood pressure.

The pressure peaks when the heart pumps.  This is called the systole.  Diastole refers to when the pressure drops as the heart relaxes.

Normal blood pressure, measured on a sphygmometer (the apparatus that’s wrapped around your arm) should be somewhere around 130 (systole) over 85 (diastole).  Readings of 140 over 90  to 180 over 110 are cause for concern because the risk of heart attack or stroke is greater.

If heart attacks, strokes and hypertension (complications with high blood pressure) run in the family you should seek medical advice from your health worker, nurse or doctor to help you prevent or reduce your risk of high blood pressure.

It’s also a good idea to try and reduce stress, cigarettes or alcohol use which can increase your BP.

 

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