The Irish Heart Foundation's mobile health service will be in Kildare next week providing free blood pressure checks delivered by nurses to prevent stroke and heart attacks from Monday, March 6 until Friday, March 10.
The Unit will be in the Supervalu in Naas on Monday, March 6 between 10am and 5pm, before moving to the Curragh Family Resource Centre, 1 Griffith Road, Curragh Camp, on Tuesday morning from 10am until 1 pm, and then in Market Square in Kildare town from 2 to 5 pm.
On Wednesday, from 2pm to 5pm, the Unit will be in Emily Square, Athy and in the Supervalu in Maynooth on Thursday afternoon from 2pm to 5 pm.
Finally the Unit will be in Celbridge Community Centre from 10am to 4 pm on Friday.
People are being encouraged to take advantage of this free service and get their blood pressure levels checked as, according to the Irish Heart Foundation, early detection is a powerful tool in the fight against high blood pressure which is a leading cause of stroke, heart disease, premature death and disability in Ireland today, with almost one million people suffering from it.
Marese Damery, Irish Heart Foundation Health Check Manager said heart disease is a silent killer.
“Silent and invisible, high blood pressure can seriously damage blood vessels and the heart if left unchecked. People with high blood pressure are three times more likely to have a stroke or heart attack compared to those with healthy or controlled blood pressure.
“The good news is that a simple blood pressure check can be all it takes to detect high blood pressure, which can then be effectively managed through lifestyle changes such as maintaining a healthy weight, being active and consuming less salt, fatty foods and alcohol.”
Those most at risk of high blood pressure are aged 45 years and over: 64% of the over 50s in Ireland have high blood pressure, while 41% of people living with high blood pressure are not taking adequate medication.
High blood pressure can be detected even in younger people but the only way to know if you have high blood pressure is to get checked and the Irish Heart Foundation is recommending that people become aware of their blood pressure levels from their 30s.
The Irish Heart Foundation relies on public and corporate donations for 92% of its income. The ground-breaking year-round service of the Mobile Health Unit has been made possible by the support of Bank of Ireland staff fund-raising the running costs.
If concerned about blood pressure talk to an Irish Heart Foundation Helpline nurse in confidence on Freephone 1800 25 25 50