Blood Pressure Testing
Introduction to High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)
High blood pressure (hypertension) means that your blood pressure is continually higher than the recommended level. It rarely has noticeable symptoms.
Around 30% or 1 in 3 people in England have high blood pressure but many people are unaware that their blood pressure is raised because they do not experience any signs or symptoms. That’s why it’s often referred to as a “silent killer”. If left untreated, high blood pressure increases your risk of a heart attack or stroke.
The only way of knowing there is a problem is to have your blood pressure measured.
All adults should have their blood pressure checked at least every five years
What is high blood pressure?
Blood pressure is measured in millimetres of mercury (mmHg) and is recorded as two figures:
systolic pressure – the pressure of the blood when your heart beats to pump blood out
diastolic pressure – the pressure of the blood when your heart rests in between beats, which reflects how strongly your arteries are resisting blood flow
For example, if your blood pressure is “140 over 90”, or 140/90mmHg, it means you have a systolic pressure of 140mmHg and a diastolic pressure of 90mmHg.
You are said to have high blood pressure (medically known as hypertension) if readings on separate occasions consistently show your blood pressure to be 140/90mmHg or higher.
A blood pressure reading below 130/80mmHg is considered to be normal.
Who is most at risk?
Your chances of having high blood pressure increase as you get older. There is often no clear cause of high blood pressure but you are at increased risk if you:
- are overweight
- have a relative with high blood pressure
- suffer with stress
- are of African or Caribbean descent
- eat too much salt
- don’t eat enough fruit and vegetables
- don’t do enough exercise
- drink too much coffee (or other caffeine-based drinks)
- drink too much alcohol
- are aged over 65
What happens during the Blood Pressure Check?
A trained member of staff will take your blood pressure in the privacy of a consultation room. Your result will be explained to you and you will be offered any advice and support needed to manage your blood pressure.
If needed, we may refer you to your GP
How long will it take?
It will only take a few minutes, but our staff member will take as long as needed if you have any questions about your check-up.
How much does a check-up cost?
A blood pressure check-up is FREE!
When can I get my blood pressure checked?
No appointment is usually needed; just call in and ask one of our pharmacy team. Occasionally at busy times you may be asked to make an appointment.
Contact us if you would like to request an appointment: