The sphygmomanometer, or blood pressure monitor, is a handy device for people with high blood pressure. It is recognised by healthcare professionals globally because of the reliable results it provides. However, to make the most of the device and get the correct readings, it must be handled and used correctly.
What are the benefits of owning a home blood pressure monitor?
- With a home monitor, you can easily track your blood pressure levels yourself..
- Daily checks allow you to have a reliable and precise follow-up.
- You can measure and evaluate the positive, negative, or zero effects on your blood pressure in the case of taking medication physical activity or a new diet that you may be on.
Things to remember while monitoring blood pressure at home
Stress or any physical activity before monitoring can influence your blood pressure measurements. Incorrect positioning of the cuff on the arm can also result in faulty readings.
Health practitioners suggest that many people do not get their blood pressure readings right. This is due to the poor positioning of the armband or cuff and a narrow measuring range. For accurate readings, it must be placed correctly on the upper arm right above the elbow…
How to put on a blood pressure cuff
- Choose the right cuff size for your arm while purchasing a blood pressure monitor.
- Position the lower part of the cuff on the upper arm directly above the bend of the elbow. And don’t place the cuff and take readings over the clothing.
- Use the same arm for measurement every day and take at least 2 readings 1 min apart to account for any variations.
Dos and don’ts
- Don’t carry out any intense activity, sports, or exercise in the hour before the measurement.
- Don’t eat and drink coffee, tea or alcohol, or smoke within one hour before the measurement.
- Do relax for 10 minutes and empty your bladder before monitoring the blood pressure.
- Do take off your watch or any jewellery so they do not interfere with the tube or create pressure around the wrist or arm.
- Do sit down without crossing your legs and keep your feet on the ground.
- Do place your arm on a stand or table so that it is not stretched.
- Don’t tie the cuff too tight around the arm.
- Don’t move, speak, or touch the device during measurement.
Reading and documenting results
For reliable results, read the measurements only after the cuff is completely deflated. In most cases, a signal indicates the end of the measurement. If you get unusual values, wait a few minutes, and monitor the blood pressure again. If in doubt, consult your doctor. Do not change your treatment under any circumstances without the advice of a specialist.
While the blood pressure monitor is accurate, it is advisable to have your device checked every two years. This verification consists of calibrating the device using a mercury column to update the accuracy of the data.
Some electronic blood pressure monitors store the values, but you can also note the results in a notebook in the form of a self-measurement log. You can also use a mobile app to record your data and share it with your doctor.