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  • Stress Less Blood Pressure Challenge

    Stress Less Blood Pressure Challenge Logo

    This challenge will help you learn stress-reduction techniques you can use to help lower your blood pressure throughout the day.

    Over the course of a month, you are asked to track your blood pressure before and after performing a stress-reduction activity on ten separate days using a health kiosk or blood pressure monitor located at your worksite or home.


    Who can participate? All Pima County employees
    Delivery: Start any time to begin; Self-paced
    Duration: 10 minutes per day; 10 days within the month.

    By completing the Stress Less Blood Pressure Challenge you will:

    • Be entered into a seasonal drawing for 1 of 5 $100 Corporate Rewards gift cards*
    • Earn 15 Healthy Lifestyle Activity Points**
    *All gift cards are subject to taxation.
    ** This challenge can be completed once per reporting year (March - February) for points.


    Challenge Instructions

    Challenge Packet

    Participant Results Form

    Online Stress Less Blood Pressure Challenge Completion Form

    1. Register for the challenge.
    2. Download the Challenge Packet.
    3. Measure your blood pressure at about the same time every day. For best results, sit comfortably with both feet on the floor for at least two minutes before taking a measurement. When you measure your blood pressure, rest your arm on a table so the blood pressure cuff is at about the same height as your heart.
    4. Record your initial blood pressure results on the Participant Results Form.
    5. Complete one of the stress-reduction activities in the Challenge Packet, then re-take your blood pressure and record the results on the Participant Results Form.
    6. After you have tracked your blood pressure before and after completing a stress-reduction activity on at least ten separate days, complete the online Stress Less Blood Pressure Challenge Completion Form. Points will be updated in ADP by the 15th of the following month. You will be entered into the seasonal drawing based on the date you complete the challenge.

    Blood Pressure Monitor Locations

    Visit the Health Kiosk webpage to locate a Higi health kiosk near you.

    Blood pressure monitors are currently available at the following worksite locations. If you do not have access to a blood pressure monitor, please contact Employee Wellness.
    Blood Pressure Monitor Location Contact
    3950 S. Country Club Rd.
    2nd Floor Break Room
    Julia Flannery
    Admin. East Building
    130 W. Congress, B-Level Break room
    Employee Wellness
    Admin West - Human Resources
    150 W. Congress, 4th Floor
    Employee Wellness
    Adult Probation
    8180 E. Broadway
    Yvette Coronado
     Avra Valley WRF
    10000 W. Snyder Hill Rd. Operations Room
    Brian Caramella
    Flowing Wells Library
    1730 W. Wetmore Rd. Staff Break Room
    Lorie Johnston
    Joyner-Green Valley Library
    601 N. La Canada Dr.
    Kathy Konecny
    Juvenile Court
    2225 E. Ajo Way
    Araceli Sanchez
    Kino Sports Complex
    2500 E. Ajo Way
    Gladys Beebe                    
    Kirk-Bear Canyon Library
    8959 E. Tanque Verde Rd.
    Coni Weatherford
    Pima Emergency Communications & Operations Center (PECOC)
    3434 E. 22nd St.
    Break Room
    Lisa Romero
    Pima County Animal Care Center
    4000 N Silverbell Rd.
    JJ Johnson
    Public Works Building Dev. Services
    201 N. Stone Ave., 1st Floor
    Betty Sanchez
    Public Works Building Flood Control
    201 N. Stone Ave, 9th Floor
    Debbie Grijalva
    Public Works Building Real Property
    201 N. Stone Ave, 6th Floor
    Lupe Fimbres
    240 N. Stone Ave
    Joleen Goddard
    RWRD - Conveyance
    3355 N. Dodge Blvd
    RWRD - Water Campus
    2955 W. Calle Agua Nueva
    Andrea Palmer
    RWRD - SRF
    4527 W. Walker Rd.
    Jackie Belasco
    Sheriff's Department
    1750 E. Benson Hwy, Gym
    Andrew Reidy
    School Superintendent
    240 N. Stone Ave.
    Jeanette Velasquez
    Tres Rios
    7101 N. Casa Grande Hwy.
    Mary Ann Estrada
    Valencia Library
    202 W. Valencia Rd.
    Break Room
    Jessica Redhouse

    About Blood Pressure

    How to Read Blood Pressure Results

    Blood pressure is typically recorded as two numbers, written as a ratio like this:

    117/76 mm Hg

    Read as "117 over 76 millimeters of mercury"

    • Systolic:The top number, which is also the higher of the two numbers, measures the pressure in the arteries when the heart beats (when the heart muscle contracts).
    • Diastolic: The bottom number, which is also the lower of the two numbers, measures the pressure in the arteries between heartbeats (when the heart muscle is resting between beats and refilling with blood).

    What is the American Heart Association (AHA) Recommendation for Healthy Blood Pressure?

    This chart reflects blood pressure categories defined by the American Heart Association.
    Blood Pressure
    mm Hg (upper #)
    mm Hg (lower #)
    Low less than 90 or less than 60
    Normal less than 120 and less than 80
    Pre-hypertension 120 - 129 or less than 80
    High Blood Pressure
    (Hypertension) Stage 1
    130 - 139 or 80 - 89
    High Blood Pressure
    (Hypertension) Stage 2
    140 or higher or 90 or higher
    Hypertensive Crisis
    (Emergency care needed)
    Higher than 180 or Higher than 120
    * Your doctor should evaluate unusually low blood pressure readings.

    What is High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)?

    High blood pressure is a chronic condition, and the damage it causes to blood vessels and organs generally occurs over years.

    However, it is possible for blood pressure to rise quickly and severely enough to be considered a hypertensive crisis. To reduce morbidity and mortality in this situation, early evaluation of organ function and blood pressure elevations at these levels is critical to determine the appropriate management.

    Hypertensive crises can present as hypertensive urgency or as a hypertensive emergency.

    If, while monitoring your blood pressure, you get a systolic reading of 180 mm Hg or higher OR a diastolic reading of 120 mm HG or higher, wait a couple of minutes and take it again. If the reading is still at or above that level, you should seek immediate emergency medical treatment for a hypertensive crisis. If you can't access the emergency medical services (EMS), have someone drive you to the hospital right away.

    Hypertensive Urgency

    Hypertensive urgency is  situation where the blood pressure is severely elevated [180 or higher for your systolic pressure (top number) or 120 or higher for your diastolic pressure (bottom number)], but there is no associated organ damage. Those experiencing hypertensive urgency may or may not experience one or more of these symptoms:
    • Severe headache
    • Shortness of breath
    • Nosebleeds
    • Severe anxiety

    Treatment of hypertensive urgency generally requires readjustment and/or additional dosing of oral medications, but most often does not necessitate hospitalization for rapid blood pressure reduction. A blood pressure reading of 180/120 or greater requires immediate evaluation, because early evaluation of organ function and blood pressure elevations at these levels is critical to determine the appropriate management.

    Hypertensive Emergency

    A hypertensive emergency exists when blood pressure reaches levels that are damaging organs. Hypertensive emergencies generally occur at blood pressure levels exceeding 180 systolic OR 120 diastolic, but can occur at even lower levels in patients whose blood pressure had not been previously high.

    The consequences of uncontrolled blood pressure in this range can be severe and include:

    • Stroke
    • Loss of consciousness
    • Memory loss
    • Heart attack
    • Damage to the eyes and kidneys
    • Loss of kidney function
    • Aortic dissection
    • Angina (unstable chest pain)
    • Pulmonary edema (fluid backup in the lungs)
    • Eclampsia

    If you get a blood pressure reading of 180 or higher on top or 120 or higher on the bottom, and are having any symptoms of possible organ damage (chest pain, shortness of breath, back pain, numbness/weakness, change in vision, difficulty speaking) do not wait to see if your pressure comes down on its own. Seek emergency medical assistance immediately. Call 9-1-1. If you can't access the emergency medical services (EMS), have someone drive you to the hospital immediately.

    How is High Blood Pressure Diagnosed?

    Your healthcare providers will want to get an accurate picture of your blood pressure and chart what happens over time. Starting at age 20, the American Heart Association recommends a blood pressure screening at your regular healthcare visit or once every 2 years, if your blood pressure is less than 120/80 mm Hg.

    Your blood pressure rises with each heartbeat and falls when your heart relaxes between beats. While BP can change from minute to minute with changes in posture, exercise, stress or sleep, it should normally be less than 120/80 mm Hg (less than 120 systolic AND less than 80 diastolic) for an adult age 20 or over. About one in three U.S. adults has high blood pressure.

    If your blood pressure reading is higher than normal, your doctor may take several readings over time and/or have you monitor your blood pressure at home before diagnosing you with high blood pressure.

    A single high reading does not necessarily mean that you have high blood pressure. However, if readings stay at 130/80 mm Hg or above (systolic 130 or above OR diastolic 80 or above) over time, your doctor will likely want you to begin a treatment program. Such a program almost always includes lifestyle changes and often prescription medication for those with readings of 130/80 or higher.

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    Employee Wellness

    Phone: (520) 724-8114
    Fax: (520) 724-8150

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    Pima County provides equal access and equal opportunity in employment and services and does not discriminate.

    Pima County provides equal access and equal opportunity in employment and services and does not discriminate.

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