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5 Ways to Improve Blood Pressure Awareness

Posted by Thomas Oliver on 7/22/2014

High blood pressure is called the “silent killer,” as it can cause major systemic health problems, including sudden cardiac arrest, without causing any noticeable or bothersome symptoms.


Getting the word out on the importance of blood pressure is a priority. So share the information and save lives! A few pointers: 

For the Elderly

For many older people, long-term caregivers are most likely already keeping an eye on blood pressure issues.


To ensure this is being properly tended to, family members should regularly be checking their blood pressure, as well as supervising the intake of any prescribed medications.


This simple act can give years more life by preventing heart attacks and strokes due to hypertension.

Smokers

The goal in the smoking population is cessation. The number one method for reducing the risk of cancer, heart attack, stroke, and high blood pressure in all age categories is quitting smoking.


However, when this does not occur, it is crucial to inform smokers of the dangers of high blood pressure.


This can be achieved through follow-up from their physician, as well as educational flyers at stores, doctor’s offices, among many other regularly attended venues.

Home Delivery

One option to raise awareness on the importance of blood pressure knowledge is creation of materials, such as flyers, to mail to communities in the area.


These flyers should contain information on what constitutes a healthy blood pressure reading, what the danger zone is, and how to find facilities and clinics that offer free readings for those unable to take a reading at home.


In situations where a reading is higher than is considered healthy, these informational flyers should, as well, direct patients to area locations where help can be found at no or low-cost for those without medical insurance coverage.


The sooner hypertension is found and treated, be it by diet, medications, or a combination thereof, the lower the risk of serious complications. 

Symptoms Awareness

While it is true that high blood pressure is often unaccompanied by signs, there are a few symptoms that can manifest as the condition progresses. These are very important to know, and one way to spread this information is through public service announcements through local hospitals, doctor’s offices, social clubs, churches, and word of mouth.


One of the most likely symptoms of hypertension is a headache. This dull headache often happens concurrently with seeing “spots,” or what appear to be “raindrops” falling in front of your face.


It can be disconcerting, but often it is a surefire sign that a spike in blood pressure, or continually elevated, untreated blood pressure, is putting vessels at risk.


It is critical that medical treatment be sought immediately in order to prevent a life altering and potentially deadly stroke.

Community Outreach

Perhaps the most effective tool in the blood pressure awareness arsenal is community education.


Reaching out to members of at-risk communities, such as low income or elderly housing, is a simple and inexpensive way to spread this urgent health information.


In-home demonstrations by volunteers on proper blood pressure taking procedures can help these populations keep tabs on those all-important systolic and diastolic readings.


Local health groups can loan or inexpensively sell digital blood pressure monitors, as well as pass out pamphlets on simple dieting options that help keep those numbers in a healthy range. 

For Blood Pressure Awareness Month, remember those who may not have regular access to medical care. Reach out in any of the above mentioned ways to help spread the word and potentially save lives. Hypertension may be the “silent killer,” but we do not have to stay silent on the subject.
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