One in three adults in Tameside has high blood pressure – sometimes called “the silent killer” as it rarely has noticeable symptoms but is a major cause of heart attacks and strokes – and a campaign is underway to tackle it.
Through its partners Be Well Tameside
, the Council has organised extra opportunities for people to have their blood pressure checked and find out more information. The events will be spread around the borough between June and October and will include opportunities at such places as Ashton Hindu Temple and Hyde Bus Station, and at events including Denton Carnival, Marvellous Mossley, St Peter’s Fun Day and Tameside Pride.
There will also be a social media and advertising campaign about the dangers, and how people can minimise the risks.
Launching the campaign Cllr Eleanor Wills, the Council’s population health lead, said: “In Tameside, 1 in 3 adults have high blood pressure.
“At least half of all strokes and heart attacks are related to high blood pressure. It’s also a major factor in chronic kidney disease, heart failure and dementia.
“But high blood pressure rarely has any noticeable symptoms. That’s why it’s often called the silent killer.
“So we’re trying to make sure people get the information they need, and to help them get their blood pressure checked.”
Tameside’s Director of Population Health, Dr Jeanelle De Gruchy, said, “Getting your blood pressure checked is easy, and it could save your life.
“You can have your blood pressure checked at your GP surgery, or at some pharmacies, or you could buy your own monitor
to check your own and your family’s blood pressure.
“It’s particularly important that adults over 40 have their blood pressure checked at least every 5 years.
“Keeping your blood pressure healthy is one way of avoiding heart attacks and strokes and all the heartache they can bring our families and loved ones.”
How to minimise the risk
Dr Ashwin Ramachandra, a senior GP partner and trainer and the local Clinical Commissioning Group’s clinical lead for long-term conditions, said: “Doctors recommend various things to help prevent and lower high blood pressure.
“It’s important to have a generally healthy diet, and don’t eat more than 6 grammes of salt a day (that’s about a teaspoon) – and remember 75% of the salt we eat is hidden in foods such as cheese, cooked meats, soups and bread.
“It’s also important to exercise regularly, try to get at least 6 hours of sleep a night, and if you’re overweight, bring your weight down.
“If you drink alcohol, stick to under 14 units a week, ideally spread out, and have several alcohol-free days every week. Also too much caffeine can raise your blood pressure, for instance if you drink more than four cups of coffee a day, or less if you’re pregnant.
“And of course it’s best to stop smoking, for various reasons.”
There’s more information about blood pressure on the NHS website
, including how to prevent it
. Dates and venues of extra opportunities for blood pressure checking and information will be notified on the Council website’s hypertension campaign page
Caption shows Karen Simpson (Be Well Tameside service manager), Angela McCloskey (Be Well Tameside health champion), Cllr Eleanor Wills, Rachel Kelly (Be Well Tameside community liaison), Dr Ashwin Ramachandra (Tameside and Glossop Strategic Commission), James Mallion (Tameside Council’s population health consultant) and Jemma Pattison (Be Well Tameside health champion).