At all of our Project Access communities across the country the health and well-being of our Residents is primary. As we approach summertime, the month of May affords us the opportunity to recalibrate our health awareness with Lupus Awareness Month and National Blood Pressure Month.

Lupus may not be top of mind for many of us but for those who suffer with the chronic, autoimmune disease it causes disabling fatigue, pain, and a wide range of other symptoms. It affects more than 1.5 million people in the U.S., 90% of them women. But according to the Lupus Foundation of America, 63% of Americans know little to nothing about lupus. 

Lupus Awareness Month (started in 1977) exists to raise awareness, funds and to provide ongoing education about the disease. Events throughout the month help to raise awareness about the physical, emotional, and financial impact of lupus while fundraising is also important to drive research initiatives and provide support and services to those who need it.

The more prevalent, recognizable, but equally serious health condition is hypertension or commonly known as high blood pressure. Throughout the month of May, National Blood Pressure Month provides awareness and education regarding hypertension.

Many people don’t even know they have high blood pressure. Symptoms of hypertension often go unnoticed and if left uncontrolled the risk of heart problems such as stroke or heart attack increase.

It’s important to know your numbers. When blood pressure is measured: the upper number (systolic pressure) measures the pressure in your arteries when your heart beats; the lower number (diastolic pressure) measures the pressure between heartbeats. For most people, a normal blood pressure is less than 120/80.

Throughout our Project Access communities we continuously hold wellness checks for our Residents of all ages. These health checks seek to identify early warning signs of conditions such as Lupus or hypertension. These check-ups also offer direct engagement with our Residents to help them mitigate their conditions and to take measures to improve their health and well-being.

Photos taken before the pandemic.