Blood Pressure Monitors
Blood Pressure Monitors are frequently used in home healthcare settings given the prevalence of white coat syndrome. Often doctors advise patients to begin regularly checking their blood pressure in at home so they can get a reading in an environment they are comfortable in. You don't have to be a healthcare professional to take a reading the machines are very straightforward to use and provide a digital reading.
Home Blood Pressure Monitor
The technical name for a blood pressure monitor is a sphygmomanometer. These monitors consist of the measuring unit and a blood pressure cuff which which wraps around the arm and inflates. When the cuff is inflated or pressurized it slightly restricts the flow of blood in the artery in the arm. A meter then measures the difference between the impeded and unimpeded blood flowing through the arm and --- voila, you have your blood pressure reading.
Today more and more people are taking a personal interest in monitoring their health and tracking changes. These Health Canada approved BP monitors are easy to use and allow the measuring of this vital medical reading in the comfort of your own home.
Popular blood pressure monitors include the Drive Medical Deluxe Automatic Blood Pressure Monitor and the BIOS Medical BIOS Diagnostics Precision Blood Pressure Monitor with App.
How exactly does Blood Pressure Reader work?
Regardless of whether you have been diagnosed with high blood pressure (also known as "hypertension" or "high blood pressure") or simply want to keep an eye on your health, a blood pressure reader is a must to keep blood pressure under control.
Home blood pressure monitors are usually digital devices that measure blood pressure almost automatically. And this is how you use a blood pressure monitor: Put the cuff around your upper arm or wrist and switch the device on. The cuff inflates and measures the blood pressure. Then the air escapes from the cuff. As soon as the measurement is completed, the measurement result is shown on the display.
Measurements of blood pressure are recorded in millimeters of mercury (mmHg) and when taken at home, readings should be based on an average of two measurements. There are many ways to take a reading from one's arm, wrist, or ankle including using a manual or digital device that can measure up to 180 mmHg. On average, the systolic value should be 120 mmHg, the diastolic value 80 mmHg. If your blood pressure values are consistently higher or lower, you should speak to your doctor about this.
There are different types of blood pressure monitors, but devices that measure blood pressure on the finger are not as reliable as devices for the upper arm or wrist.
Easy to use Blood Pressure Meter
An electronic blood pressure monitor is particularly impressive because of its ease of use. Even patients who have no experience with regular blood pressure measurement can usually cope with it without any problems if they have read the enclosed instructions carefully and take the manufacturer's information into account.
The technical requirements for measuring blood pressure are hardly worth mentioning; you don't even need an electrical outlet. The blood pressure measurement with an electronic device works very easily with batteries, which feed the inflation of the cuff, the digital display and the buttons. Measuring blood pressure, pulse and the like can be so easy!
How frequently should blood pressure be checked with Blood Pressure Machine?
It is recommended to measure your blood pressure at least once per week, but there are some people who use everyday measurements. Ultimately, the only person that knows exactly how often you should measure your blood pressure is you. If you feel like you need to check it more frequently or less frequently than what other people recommend, then by all means do. Talk with your health care team about how often you should have your blood pressure measured or when.
People with high blood pressure may need to check their blood pressure more frequently than those with normal blood pressure. This is because pain medication, high salt diets, and stress can all cause spikes in the person's blood pressure without them even realizing it. If the person doesn't know their baseline blood pressure, they will not be able to tell if these events are affecting it or if their condition has worsened.
What factors influence blood pressure readings?
A blood pressure reading can be influenced by a number of factors, including:
- Many people experience a certain level of anxiety when they have their blood pressure taken. This is not an unusual reaction but is instead called “white coat syndrome” and can affect as many as one-third of all people.
- Many people are unaware of the effects food, alcohol, caffeine, and heavy exercise can have on your blood pressure reading. There are many factors that can affect your reading, but some common ones are what you ate or drank, whether or not you smoked cigarettes or drank alcohol before the test, and how much time has passed since any intense activity.
- Sitting can affect your blood pressure. When you sit, the muscles around your upper thigh and those that form the buttock tighten, causing a squeezing effect on the artery that carries blood from your knee to your heart. This increases the pressure in this artery, and as a result, can increase your blood pressure reading. The way you're sitting right now may be hurting your blood pressure.
Tips to measure blood pressure with a blood pressure measurement unit
In order to get the most accurate reading, it’s important to have an empty stomach when taking your blood pressure. This way, you won’t have any outside factors affecting the measurement. It can also be helpful to try and stay relaxed. Taking a deep breath in and out before taking your blood pressure will do this for you.
It is always best to be as hydrated as possible when reading your blood pressure. After a full bladder, the pressure on it can cause your diastolic reading (bottom number) to be higher than the actual pressure in your arteries. To get an accurate reading, make sure you've emptied your bladder for at least 10 minutes before taking your blood pressure.
It's important to make sure the cuff is snug but not too tight; it should be against your bare skin and wrap around your arm three times. If the cuff is too tight it will restrict circulation and cause a false reading. A correct reading can be taken when a person's arm feels comfortable and has a full range of motion with no numbness or tingling in the fingers. And the last thing to remember is to make sure both feet are flat on the ground, with legs uncrossed.
Halo Healthcare offers a wide range of clinically validated blood pressure monitors in Canada and US so you can decide which one is best for you.