Health checks - What will the nurse check?
What will the nurse check?
You may have had this done before when a cuff was put around your arm while you are sitting down. This will let you know if your blood pressure is high, normal or low. If it’s high the nurse may suggest you eat healthily, take regular exercise and have healthy limits of alcohol intake. This is likely to reduce your blood pressure. If lifestyle changes are not enough, you may also be offered medication to lower blood pressure. You can ask about any side-effects this medication may have.
This is tested with a simple blood test, which looks at how much cholesterol is in your blood. Cholesterol is a fatty substance that your body needs to function normally. If you have too much it can build up in the arteries that carry blood around the body. This can then restrict the blood flow to the heart, brain and the rest of the body. If your cholesterol is high, your practice nurse can help you to lower it by suggesting a healthy balanced diet that reduces the amount of fatty food that you eat. Regular exercise and stopping smoking can also help to lower cholesterol levels. If lifestyle changes like this do not help to reduce high cholesterol levels, then you may be offered medication to lower it. You can ask about any side-effects this medication may have.
They will weigh you to make sure you have a healthy weight that is right for your height. If you’re overweight, the nurse can support you to lose weight.
Blood sugar is tested with a small finger prick and is often used to check for and monitor diabetes.
They might ask how much you exercise and if you smoke. If you want to make changes the nurse could offer you extra help, such as a personal ‘health trainer’ or stop-smoking classes. Make sure you ask about this support if you would like it.
Need practical advice & info? We can help.
Contact our Advice team about mental health & related issues
0300 5000 927 Monday - Friday 9.30am - 4pm, not including bank holidays