In today’s fast-paced world, taking time for regular health checks may not always be a priority. However, as many medical professionals will tell you, preventative healthcare is often the most effective form. One vital aspect of this is understanding and monitoring your blood pressure. Home monitoring can act as an early warning system, helping you take preventative action in a timely manner.
Steph, a 39-year-old woman from Shoeburyness, serves as an excellent example of why it’s crucial to “know your numbers” when it comes to blood pressure.
Steph first faced health concerns nine years ago during her pregnancy, when she experienced borderline high blood pressure. However, it wasn’t until 2018 that her GP decided to put her on medication for her blood pressure. Following their recommendation, Steph also purchased her own blood pressure monitor to keep track of her BP at home.
Initially, Steph had difficulty accurately measuring her blood pressure. However, after a brief consultation with her practice nurse, she learned the correct technique for monitoring her BP and how to interpret the results.
The results were a wake-up call; Steph was diagnosed with hypertension and needed medication to manage it. Had she not been monitoring her blood pressure at home, this condition could have gone unnoticed, putting her at risk for severe health complications, including heart attacks and strokes.
Managing a chronic condition like hypertension isn’t solely about medication. Steph’s GP also introduced her to the Health and Wellbeing Coach at their practice. She received tailored advice on physical activity and lifestyle choices, illustrating the NHS’s commitment to long-term wellbeing through behavioural change.
Her Health and Wellbeing Coach connected her with her local Slimming World group and a charity organisation, Just Ride at Garon’s Park Leisure Centre. These connections were instrumental in helping Steph lose over four stone within a year and in engaging in physical activities she genuinely enjoyed – and that she could also experience with her family.
By keeping tabs on her blood pressure at home, Steph took an active role in her own healthcare, enabling her to make timely changes to her lifestyle and medical choices before her situation deteriorated.
Recognising the significance of maintaining healthy blood pressure levels and learning effective management strategies has set Steph on a course towards improved well-being.
For more information on home blood pressure monitoring and other preventative health measures, contact your local GP, community pharmacist or visit the NHS website.