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San Diegans Encouraged To Get Blood Pressure Checked On Valentine's Day

San Diegans Encouraged To Get Blood Pressure Checked On Valentine’s Day
San Diegans are being encouraged to love their heart on Valentine’s Day by getting their blood pressure checked.

Valentine’s Day is traditionally a day for romance. But local health officials hope San Diegans will also take the time to get their blood pressure checked.

The free blood pressure screenings are part of San Diego County's annual "Love Your Heart Day." Medical volunteers will provide the screenings at some 170 sites countywide.

The volunteers will also hand out information on how to improve heart health.

High blood pressure increases one’s risk for heart disease and stroke. But studies show most people with the condition don’t know they have it.

The nonprofit Champions for Health is one of dozens of partners that's helping the county organize and staff the screenings. CEO Barbara Mandel said heart disease is the leading cause of death nationwide.

“And if we can get people to know what their numbers are, we can get them to probably pay more attention to their own health, and maybe get on a healthier life track," Mandel explained.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said one out of every three adults in the United States has high blood pressure.

The screenings will be conducted at government offices and libraries around the region. Some hospitals and social services organizations, such as the YMCA and Family Health Centers of San Diego, will also offer screenings.

Details and locations — including some in Tijuana, Rosarito and Tecate — are available online at livewellsd.org/love-your-heart.