SHOPPERS will be able to get a free blood pressure check at the Pyramids Shopping Centre today.

As part of the world's largest public blood pressure screening, people will be able to get checked outside Boots Opticians, next to the food court from 10am to 4pm today (Friday, May 17).

The Wirral Public Health team will be in town to raise awareness of high blood pressure in time for World Hypertension Day which takes place annually on May 17.

Public health manager at Wirral Council, Rebecca Mellor, said: “Untreated high blood pressure usually gives no warning symptoms, so is often called the ‘invisible killer’ and is the biggest cause of heart attack and stroke worldwide.

“We know that approximately 1 in 3 Wirral residents have high blood pressure, but don’t know it, so we want every adult on the Wirral to get their blood pressure checked regularly and become as familiar with their blood pressure numbers as they are with their height, weight and PIN numbers.

“Blood pressure can be raised for lots of reasons, often temporarily, but should never be ignored and further tests with a pharmacist, practice nurse or GP are always advised.

“Being diagnosed with high blood pressure needn’t be scary either, as it can usually be easily reduced and controlled, through making healthy lifestyle changes and/or by taking regular medication, which as well as reducing blood pressure, also reduces the risk of having a heart attack and stroke.

“It’s never been easier to get your blood pressure checked regularly because as well as GP surgeries, most pharmacies have blood pressure monitors now."

The team will also provide tips, health and advice on how to achieve and maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Derek Millar, commercial director at Pyramids Shopping Centre, said: “We are really pleased to once again be supporting this life-saving campaign.

"It’s great that we can help raise awareness in the community, as this is a condition that can go quietly undetected but is very treatable in its early stages. We encourage people to stop by on the day.

“The checks only take a minute and visitors will also be find out fantastic information on what a healthy reading looks like and how to keep an active lifestyle."