Taking Your Blood Pressure With A Monitor
People with hypertension or hypotension are advised to keep a close watch on their blood pressure at all times in order to identify any potential problems or complications as soon as possible. This can be done by taking your blood pressure reading using a traditional instrument or with a modern automatic blood pressure monitor.
Using the traditional tool can be quite difficult for someone who has not had the proper training, as the pulses that can so easily be counted by nurses and doctors can be quite imperceptible for most of us, however, there is no such counting required with an automatic blood pressure monitor because all the results are clearly displayed within seconds on an easy-to-read screen.
Using a Blood Pressure Monitor
When you have high blood pressure, using a blood pressure monitor can help you to keep a record of your blood pressure over a long period of time and this is one of the major benefits. This will give both you and your doctor a better idea of what’s going on with your heart.
In your doctor’s office you may have the nurse place a cuff around your arm and then listen to your blood flow with a stethoscope. This is the most accurate way to take blood pressure, but it does require some training.
However, as stated earlier, you can get good results from using a blood pressure machine that can automatically take your blood pressure for you.
There are in home blood pressure monitors that are very simple to use and they can help you to take accurate readings at home.
Different Types of Montitors
There are two different kinds of monitors:
- those that fit over the arm and
- those that use the wrist to take readings.
In general, the monitors that use your arm get more precise readings than wrist cuffs, but wrist cuffs are less expensive and can be helpful.
When it comes to using one of these machines, you’ll need to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for specifics. However, generally they all work the same way.
- You’ll place the cuff around your arm or wrist, first.
- After the cuff is placed in the proper spot, you’ll press a button on the machine that tells it to start.
- You’ll then feel the cuff inflate very tightly – it may even be uncomfortable.
- You’ll need to sit still and quietly while the machine does its job.
Once the reading is complete, the cuff will quickly deflate and your blood pressure will appear on the screen of the monitor. It may also give you your heart rate. You can then record this blood pressure in your log.
When you’re using a blood pressure monitor at home, it’s important to make sure you’re seated and resting. You may want to sit for several minutes to make sure that your blood pressure reading is accurate for a resting state.
Choosing the Right Blood Pressure Monitor
Some of the better known brands include Omron and Microlife. If you are planning to buy a blood pressure monitor for your own personal use, it is definitely recommended that you choose one that is made by a reputable company.
When you’re ready to purchase an automatic blood pressure monitor, there are several things to keep in mind. You want to get the best value you can and still get a high quality monitor. Before you purchase a monitor or order one, follow these tips for purchasing one and using it.
- Tip 1: Decide on an arm monitor or wrist monitor.
Most of the time, it’s better to use a monitor where you place the cuff on your arm. These tend to be more accurate and the newer models are small and easy to transport.
However, there are some good reasons that you may choose a wrist monitor. For example, you may have a larger arm that a cuff can’t fit around properly. You may also have pain when your blood pressure is taken in the arm. Using a wrist cuff at this point is a good alternative.
- Tip 2: Read the reviews.
One of the greatest things about online technology is that it allows you to look at the reviews and specifications of products before you buy them. When it comes to an automatic blood pressure monitor, you need to make sure you read the reviews.
Look for monitors that have mostly good reviews. There may be some bad ones, but if most of them are good it’s okay. Also look for the types of problems people have with the machine. Are they because of user error? Or are they because the equipment is faulty?
- Tip 3: Read the directions.
Most of the time when there are errors with a blood pressure monitor, it’s because the user didn’t follow the directions properly. While these monitors are simple to use, you still need to be sure and follow all the directions.
If you’ve followed the directions, make sure to call customer service before returning the monitor. They may be able to walk you through the process to help figure out what’s going wrong.
- Tip 4: Check your monitor against the doctor’s office.
If you’re dealing with high blood pressure, it’s important to make sure measurements are accurate. Try taking your monitor with you to the doctor’s office.
Compare the number your healthcare provider gets with the measurements from your own monitor. If they’re different, see if your doctor can help to make sure you’re using the monitor in the correct spot.
If you can’t get the numbers to match up within a few points, you may need to return the monitor. Then look for another automatic blood pressure monitor that does perform the way you need it to.