• What is the normal blood pressure?

    Are you worried about high blood pressure? 

    In the UK, an estimated 1 in 3 people suffer from high blood pressure, a health problem that increases your risk of heart disease and stroke

    Often referred to as a “silent killer,” developing high blood pressure can happen to anyone but is a lot more common in people with a poor diet and lifestyle or those with a pre-existing medical condition. 

    Find out what is the normal blood pressure below. Plus, how to find out what your blood pressure reading is and what to do if it is too high. 


    What is a normal blood pressure reading?


    A normal blood pressure reading should be under 140/90 mmHg. This means that the systolic reading should be lower than 140mmHg, and the diastolic reading should be lower than 90mmHG.

    A low blood pressure reading is 90/60 mmHg which doesn’t always indicate a health problem but can be a sign of another illness or condition. 

    Possible high blood pressure, also known as hypertension, gives a systolic reading of between 140 and 180 mmHg and a diastolic reading of between 90 and 110 mmHg. 

    A blood pressure reading that is higher than 180/110 mmHg means that you have severe hypertension. 


    How can I get my blood pressure checked? 


    If you think you might have high blood pressure or you simply want to check that your blood pressure is as it should be, then there are several services that you can utilise:

    • An NHS GP 
    • Some UK pharmacies 
    • Some UK workplaces
    • At an NHS health check 

    It is worth noting that an estimated 5 million adults in the UK have undiagnosed high blood pressure, and the only way you can find out yours is by having it checked.

    If you don’t want to see a health professional to have your blood pressure checked, you can buy blood pressure monitors to use at home. These are also a good idea for those who need to check their blood pressure regularly. 


    What happens if I have a high blood pressure reading?


    As mentioned above, hypertension can increase your risk of serious illnesses such as cardiovascular disease and heart attacks. Therefore, if you have a high blood pressure reading, it is crucial that you book an appointment with your GP. 

    There are lots of ways to treat high blood pressure, including eating a better diet, giving up smoking, and reducing your alcohol intake. If the blood vessels in your heart, kidney, brain, or eyes are damaged, then your doctor may offer you medication to treat your high blood pressure. They are also likely to offer medication if you have already developed heart or circulatory disease or if you have diabetes. 

    There are also a number of support services, both online and face-to-face, that you can reach out to if you have high blood pressure, such as Heart Helpline and self help service, which can give you more information about how to manage your condition. 

    More people are seeking out therapy and mental health services than ever before, contributing to a mental health crisis. This doesn’t mean people should stop seeking these life-changing treatments, but instead that healthcare providers need to step up. A better approach towards living that puts mental health and physical health on par is essential to establish a well-adjusted, healthy society that can move forward from trauma, stress, and crises. 


    One of the societal shifts is the emergence of mental health days. While not adopted everywhere, support for taking a mental health day is increasing for students and workers alike. What these days look like will depend on the person, with some benefitting from a work-from-home setup for days when they’re not feeling well to taking the day off entirely to seek out emergency care for their mental health condition


    Can students take mental health days


    Students and young people can absolutely take mental health days. Mental health issues range in intensity, and sometimes being able to stay at home can improve a student’s condition considerably. This is particularly true in a post-COVID world where classrooms are more integrated with technology than before. You can simply get in touch with the teacher/s to get caught up on the work missed. 


    A student’s mental health directly impacts their performance. This is why more schools and universities are increasing their mental health support. You can take a day and catch up later, or even take off the rest of the semester and take it again the next year. This allows students who have reached their breaking point or who are going through an extended grieving or mental health crisis to prioritise their health and come back to their education when they’re better. 


    Mental health days can particularly help children when they’re feeling overwhelmed. If they’re making mental health days a pattern, however, parents must investigate. Schools are usually fun places for kids, and if your child is regularly trying to avoid going, there are likely deeper issues at play. 


    What are the benefits of mental health days? 


    Mental health days can: 


    • Reduce anxiety 
    • Minimise stress 
    • Let individuals process emotions 
    • Give people time to seek out health services 


    There is no wrong or right way to use a mental health day. However, you will want to find the best approach to lower your stress and improve your mental well-being. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, taking the time to focus on the things you love can be just the ticket, or you may want to book an emergency session with your therapist or GP, depending on the type of mental health concerns you have. 

    When mental health days are not enough 


    Mental health days are great options when you’re feeling overwhelmed, but they are not a cure-all. Seeking medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment from a mental health professional is essential for tackling the root cause. With NHS GP, you can refer yourself for counselling and get free support and access to psychological therapies. If you’re at the start of your mental health recovery journey, you can even take our depression self-assessment test to understand better how you’re feeling. 

    Heart attacks can occur in men and women of any age, though some risk factors may make cardiac arrest more likely in some than others. These risk factors or warning signs include fitness level, genetics, diet, and more. While you can survive a cardiac arrest, you must call 999 as soon as possible to get medical intervention. Waiting too long decreases your chance of survival.


    What is a heart attack? 

    Heart attacks happen when a blood vessel supplying the blood flow to the heart is reduced or blocked due to a clot. Clots can occur anywhere, from your heart to your brain to your limbs. When a clot forms and blocks an artery, it causes serious problems. In the brain, it can cause a stroke, and if a clot flows to the heart or your coronary arteries, it can cause a heart attack, otherwise known as cardiac arrest.

    These clots are caused by a build-up of fat, cholesterol, and other substances that are collectively known as plaque in the arteries. Healthy living that includes regular exercise and a healthy diet can minimise plaque build-up and reduce your risk of cardiac arrest. If you’re worried you are at risk of having a heart attack, use NHS GP’s resources to take steps towards lowering your risk.


    Warning signs and symptoms

    There are 5 main signs and symptoms of a heart attack in both men and women.

    • Chest pain 

    Chest pain is the most common sign of a heart attack. You’ll usually experience this pain in the left or centre of your chest. It usually lasts a few minutes and then goes away before coming back. You may feel pressure, fullness, or pain.

    • Dizziness 

    Another common symptom of cardiac arrest is that you may suddenly feel light-headed, faint, or weak. This may even be accompanied by a cold sweat.

    • Pain in joints 

    In addition to chest pain, you may also feel pain or discomfort in your joints, most notably your jaw, neck, back, and in your arms and shoulders.

    • Shortness of breath 

    If you also experience shortness of breath or feel like you can’t breathe properly, this is another sign of a heart attack.

    • Nausea 

    Nausea is another one of the common heart attack symptoms. It’s usually experienced by women and not men. Always get in touch with emergency services if you experience sudden nausea alongside the other symptoms of cardiac arrest.


    Heart attack risk factors 

    There are three main factors that indicate a risk of heart attack:

    • High blood pressure
    • High blood cholesterol
    • Smoking

    Genetics and age also play a factor, with your risk of cardiac arrest increasing as you age and in those with a family history of heart conditions.


    How to prevent a heart attack 

    Healthy living and caring for your body is the easiest way to lower your chances or prevent heart attack. If you are already at risk, you can also look into medication to help lower blood pressure and cholesterol. Use our available self help service to guide you through the health changes you need to make for your lifestyle and to connect with a GP who can inform you of any medication options that would be a good fit.

    When you go to university, it can be a very exciting chapter in your life. Not only is it a great opportunity to challenge yourself academically, but you’ll meet lots of new people and likely make life-long friendships during these years. You’ll also learn a lot about yourself, as these can be very transformative years as you learn to live independently away from home. 

    While all of these things can be very positive, there are points where university might become overwhelming, whether it’s pressure from studying or burning the candle at both ends. This is why students need to practice good self-care, and here is a quick guide to help you do this.


    What is Self-Care?

    Self-care covers both your physical and mental health, and it is a practice anyone can do at home. It’s how you can take responsibility for your well-being and everyone should know how to do this properly. 

    Some key parts of self-care include taking the time to relax and perhaps even practicing some mindfulness techniques to help reduce stress. These include activities like meditation, journaling, or even arts and crafts that can help you feel more soothed. Sticking to a good sleep cycle can result in you feeling refreshed, and eating healthy meals are also part of this routine. You might also find that getting out of the house to get some fresh air can improve your mood and energy levels, too. 


    Why is Self-Care Important for Students?

    Self-care is important for anyone at any age, but when you are juggling commitments to your studies and perhaps even taking on a part-time job, it can be easy to find yourself struggling to keep up with these demands. This is even more challenging if you are also trying to keep up with social commitments. 

    While it is important to spend time with friends or family as part of your self-care and maintain good relationships, trying to take on too much is not good for you. This is why you need to read articles like our own that address the answer to “what is self-care for students?” and learn how you can incorporate this into your daily routine. 


    Where Can You Get Help for This as a Student?

    If you do find yourself struggling as a student with your mental health, then there are some options for you to explore. A lot of universities will have counselors on campus to help support their students with mental health struggles, particularly if it is related to problems they are having with their courses or other academic issues. 

    You can also reach out in person or online to an NHS GP who can point you in the right direction for mental health services or give you more self-care tips. It is important to make the most of these services if you are struggling so that you can move forward to a healthier, happier lifestyle overall.

    If you are a student who is starting to feel overwhelmed, you might want to think about your self-care routine and how you can make improvements. Use these tips and look into further resources to make sure you are getting the right support.

  • This site is registered on wpml.org as a development site.