How Can I Check My Blood Pressure At Home Using
But you dont need to go to your doctor just to get a blood pressure reading. The easiest way to monitor your own blood pressure at home is to get a machine that has a blood pressure calculator and digital display.
Purchase a blood pressure monitor cuff that wraps around the upper arm. The cuff should fit well, and not be too loose or too tight when not in use. Wrist and finger monitors are not recommended because the readings arent as reliable. When choosing a blood pressure monitor, take it to your doctors office. They may be able to show you how to use it properly and check whether the machine provides accurate readings.
Here are some tips to follow while measuring your blood pressure at home:
- Before measuring your blood pressure, sit quietly for 5 minutes with your arm relaxed on a supporting surface at the level of your heart.
- Your back should be supported and both feet should be flat on the floor.
- The cuff should be positioned on your upper arm as instructed on the guide that came with the monitor. It is easier to use your non-dominant arm .
- Avoid caffeine, smoking, or exercise at least 30 minutes before measuring your blood pressure. Do not take a reading if stressed or angry.
Blood pressure categories defined by the American Heart Association are as follows:
- Normal: Below 120/80 mm Hg
- Prehypertension: 120-139/80-90 mm Hg
When And Where To Get Your Blood Pressure Tested
You should have a blood pressure test if youre worried about your blood pressure at any time.
If youre over 40, you can have this test done as part of an NHS Health Check, which is offered to adults in England aged 40 to 74 every 5 years.
If you have been diagnosed with high or low blood pressure, or you have a high risk of developing either, you may need more frequent checks of your blood pressure.
You can get your blood pressure tested at a number of places, including:
- your local GP surgery
- some workplaces
Stethoscope Usage And Korotkoff Sounds
The stethoscope is used on bare skin so that a clients clothing does not affect the sounds. The stethoscope does not make sounds louder it simply blocks out extraneous noises so you can better hear the Korotkoff sounds. These sounds are heard through a stethoscope applied over the brachial artery when the blood pressure cuff is deflating. You will not hear anything when you first place the stethoscope over the brachial artery, because unobstructed blood flow is silent. The Korotkoff sounds appear after you inflate the cuff and then begin to deflate the cuff. The Korotkoff sounds are the result of the turbulent blood caused by the inflated cuff compressing the artery and oscillations of the arterial wall when the heart beats during cuff deflation.
Here are a few tips:
- Use a high quality stethoscope with durable, thick tubing. Avoid stethoscopes with long tubing because this can distort sounds.
- Ensure quiet surroundings so that you can better hear the Korotkoff sounds.
- Make sure that the slope of the stethoscope earpieces point forward or toward your nose.
- Use a stethoscope that has both bell and diaphragm capacity. See Figure 5.4 for bell and diaphragm.
Figure 5.4: Stethoscope with bell and diaphragm
Film clip 5.2: Opening and closing the bell and diaphragm
Alternatively, if viewing textbook as a pdf, use this link: https://www.youtube.com/embed/rp_4h-tCmvs?rel=0
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What Is Normal Blood Pressure And When Is Blood Pressure Considered To Be High
Blood pressure is always measured on a number of different days and when you are at rest. If several of these measurements are too high, you are said to have high blood pressure, even if only one of the two either the systolic or the diastolic one is high. The medical term for high blood pressure is hypertension. In adults, blood pressure is considered to be normal under a systolic value of 140 mmHg and under a diastolic value of 90 mmHg.
When taking your blood pressure for the first time, it makes sense to measure the blood pressure in both arms, because its sometimes high on only one side. The values that are higher are always the ones used for assessing blood pressure. After that it is enough to measure the blood pressure only in the arm that produced the higher reading. A person is considered to have high blood pressure if the systolic value is over 140 mmHg, the diastolic value is over 90 mmHg, or if both are higher than these readings.
Table: Normal and high blood pressure readings
|systolic over 140 mmHg and/or diastolic over 90 mmHg|
Common Causes Of Inaccurate Readings
A number of factors can affect your blood pressure and heart rate. If your numbers are unusually high or low, make some adjustments before trying again:
- Stress. When youre worried, stress hormones temporarily elevate both your blood pressure and heart rate. Avoid stressors before checking your blood pressure at home.
- Drug and alcohol use. Tobacco, alcohol, and caffeine can affect your numbers, so avoid stimulants and depressants.
- Other medicines. Talk with your doctor about prescription and over-the-counter medicines that may interfere with an accurate reading.
Once you determine your heart rate and blood pressure, record them in a journal or app. Try taking your pulse and checking your blood pressure around the same time every day to establish a personalized baseline. Its that baseline your doctor will use to help you determine what your numbers mean.
To schedule a comprehensive heart screening, visit UPMCs Heart and Vascular Institute.
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Ambulatory Blood Pressure Monitoring Devices/abpm
This is most commonly used if there is a significant disparity between the blood pressure readings acquired at home and at a doctors clinic.
It is a small device worn by the patient at home or anywhere he goes. It also shows the blood pressure readings automatically and accurately every thirty minutes even if the patient is asleep. This device is usually given to pregnant women and patients with the so-called White Coat Syndrome discussed above.
ABPM comes with an arm cuff or wrist cuff and should be worn the whole day even while doing chores and exercises.
Why Is Blood Pressure Higher In The Legs Than Arms
It has been recognized for some time that systolic pressures at the level of the ankles can also be elevated in comparison to pressures measured in the arm. This is usually attributed to calcification of the arteries, which prevents arterial compression and results in a falsely elevated pressure measurement.
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How To Use A Blood Pressure Cuff At Home
You could always inflate a manual sphygmomanometer with a hand pump and count Korotkoff sounds in your head, but why would you when wireless, digital blood pressure monitors are so readily available these days? They don’t have to be expensive, either: Some models sell for less than $30 a unit.
Plus, you’re way more likely to get an accurate blood pressure reading if you use a digital cuff — there’s less room for error. To take your blood pressure at home with a digital blood pressure monitor, all you have to do is:
1. Slide the blood pressure cuff onto your upper arm and secure it so that it sits snugly about one inch above the crease of your elbow.
2. If you have an automatic model, simply push the button that inflates the cuff. If you have a manual model, use the hand pump to inflate the cuff.
3. After the cuff fully inflates, air will automatically start flowing back out.
4. Look at the screen to get your blood pressure reading.
5. If you need to repeat the measurement, wait a few minutes before attempting a new reading.
At-home, digital blood pressure monitors can be worn on the wrist or upper arm, depending on what model you choose.
If You Get A High Blood Pressure Reading
- A single high reading is not an immediate cause for alarm. If you get a reading that is slightly or moderately higher than normal, take your blood pressure a few more times and consult your healthcare professional to verify if there s a health concern or whether there may be any issues with your monitor.
- If your blood pressure readings suddenly exceed 180/120 mm Hg, wait five minutes and test again. If your readings are still unusually high, contact your doctor immediately. You could be experiencing a hypertensive crisis.
- If your blood pressure is higher than 180/120 mm Hg and you are experiencing signs of possible organ damage such as 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. Call 911.
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Hr And Ln Mnpv Values Derived Using The Smartphone
The agreement between HR and ln mNPV measurements derived from the iPhysioMeterSM run on an iPhone 6s and a laboratory photoplethysmograph with a 16-bit A/D converter are shown in Fig. .
The agreement of heart rate and natural log transformation modified normalized pulse volume measurements derived from an iPhone 6s and a laboratory photoplethysmograph . Solid line represents the geometric mean regression line and its formula, together with r value, is shown in each scatterplot. Corresponding BlandAltman plots. Solid line and dashed lines represent fixed bias and M±1 standard deviation range, respectively. Average=/2, Difference=PPG iPhone. N=49.
Tips For Checking Your Own Blood Pressure
There are certain factors that can cause blood pressure to temporarily rise. For example, blood pressure normally rises as a result of:
- Certain medicines
Try to avoid as many of these factors as you can when taking your blood pressure. Also, try to measure your blood pressure at about the same time each day. Your doctor may want you to check your blood pressure several times during the day to see if it fluctuates.
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Where Can I Learn How To Take My Blood Pressure Myself
In Germany and other countries, people with high blood pressure can attend patient education courses that teach a number of things, including how to measure your blood pressure. As part of specialized disease management programs for people who have narrow coronary arteries , statutory health insurers offer additional healthcare services. These include patient education about high blood pressure. Some doctors practices dont offer these courses, though.
How Do I Know If My Monitor Is Accurate Or If I Am Using It Correctly
Once you buy your device, have your doctor check it for accuracy. They should check your monitor once a year. On your own, periodically check the tubing for cracks and leaks. Proper care and storage are necessary. Make sure the tubing is not twisted when you store it. Keep it away from heat.
Ask your doctor or nurse to teach you how to use your blood pressure monitor correctly. This will help you achieve good results in controlling your blood pressure.
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How To Check Blood Pressure At Home Without Equipment
Work has become an integral part of the world in which we live. Most people work very hard, so regular visits to the doctor for a full health check are a thing of the past.
However, it is important to monitor vital body functions. So today were going to look at one of the vital signs, blood pressure, what it means and how you can check it at home without equipment. Youve probably heard a lot about blood pressure and the importance of keeping it at a normal level.
Knowing that your body is functioning properly is one of the most important thing you have to pay attention to.
How Can I Measure My Blood Pressure At Home
Talk with your health care team about regularly measuring your blood pressure at home, also called self-measured blood pressure monitoring.
SMBP means you regularly use a personal blood pressure measurement device away from a doctors office or hospitalusually at home. These blood pressure monitors are easy and safe to use. A health care team member can show you how to use one if you need help.
Evidence shows that people with high blood pressure are more likely to lower their blood pressure if they use SMBP combined with support from their health care team than if they dont use SMBP.3
Use these additional tips for SMBP:4
- Use a blood pressure log to record your blood pressure measurements.
- Take your blood pressure at the same time every day.
- Take at least two readings, 1 or 2 minutes apart.
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Look For Your Carotid Artery
The second step is to find the carotid artery that runs through the neck. Please see the diagram above.
Again, its important to understand that this is a rough estimate that only tells you if your systolic blood pressure is not low.
- Press lightly until you feel a pulse.
- Do not press too hard as this restricts blood flow.
- A palpated pulse on the carotid artery means that the heart is pumping a pressure of 60-70 mm Hg.
Current Drawbacks Of Cuff
Several limitations pertain to the currently available cuff-less BP technology.
Second, the current measurement methods based on PTT and tonometry are sensitive to motion artifact and loss of signal upon movement. In several of the aforementioned studies on cuff-less PTT-based devices, researchers encountered a high rate of measurement errors and calibration errors . Tonometry-based cuff-less devices need to be tightly coupled to the underlying artery usually with an adhesive tape to prevent loss of coupling and loss of measurements .
Additionally, the software and data transfer on the back end of most of the cuff-less BP measurement modalities is critically underdeveloped. This is a clinically relevant concern, since frequent BP self-measurement without a co-intervention from a healthcare provider does not seem to affect BP control much .
Finally, for all of the current cuff-less BPT technologies, it is presently unclear how the measured values in real life will relate to clinical or cuff-based home BP measurements. Because cuff-less methods make it much easier to perform measurements on the go, it is likely that these measurements are substantially different from resting BP values. Prospective clinical studies would need to assess how these measurements compare to conventional BP measurements, and what values or trends are ultimately associated with adverse outcomes. This would provide a scientific basis for medication adjustments using cuff-less BPT.
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What Affects A Blood Pressure Reading
Many things can affect a blood pressure reading, including:
- Nervousness about having your blood pressure taken. This is called white coat syndrome. As many as 1 in 3 people who have a high blood pressure reading at the doctors office may have normal blood pressure readings outside of it.1
- What you ate, drank, or did before your reading. If you smoked, drank alcohol or caffeine, or exercised within 30 minutes of having your blood pressure measured, your reading might be higher.2
- How you are sitting. Crossing your legs and letting your arm droop at your side rather than rest on a table at chest height can make your blood pressure go up.2
Its important to get an accurate blood pressure reading so that you have a clearer picture of your risk for heart disease and stroke.
A reading that says your blood pressure is lower than it actually is may give you a false sense of security about your health. A reading that says your blood pressure is higher than it actually is may lead to treatment you dont need.
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Monitoring Bp Without An Equipment
Caution: Monitoring blood pressure at home without Blood Pressure monitoring equipment is never entirely accurate. People who favor this method should also watch out for high blood and low blood symptoms to support the result. This step is taught but not very widely accepted. It is merely to give patients a rough idea of their blood pressure level to avoid any wrong assumptions.
There are a few things to consider if you wish to check your blood pressure at home without monitoring equipment.
Your doctor should be notified you want to do it without a device. Your cardiologist will tell you when and how to do it.
Here are certain methods on how to monitor your blood pressure without any monitoring equipment. You will do it through artery palpation.
First, you have to locate the radial pulse of the other hand with your index and middle fingers. You may use whichever hand suits you. The radial artery is at the wrist at the lower arm. Palpate your wrist to feel the pulse.
Now, when you locate the pulse, feel how strong it is
If the pulse seems moderate, the systolic measurement is 80 mmHg.
If the pulse seems weak it is about 60 to 70 mmHg.
And, if the pulse is very palpable, you have a systolic measurement higher than 80 mmHg.
This artery is located at the groin.
Feel for a pulse slightly below the groin and above the thigh. A strong pulse means the systolic measurement is about 70 to 80 mmHg.
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Unaware Of High Blood Pressure
Most people do not have any special symptoms of hypertension, so they live unaware of the disease. Apparently, people who look healthy and fit in every way can also suffer from high blood pressure, but they are unaware of it. However, in severe cases, the symptoms of high blood pressure appear. These symptoms include nose bleeds, headaches, insomnia, anxiety and confusion, and breathing problems.
If hypertension is not treated, the chances of having a heart attack and stroke are multiplied. Many major diseases can be prevented by treating hypertension. If left untreated, in addition to heart attacks and strokes, heart failure can be preceded by a gradual impairment of the ability to pump blood, kidney failure, poor eyesight, and eye diseases. When left untreated, hypertension can dilate and rupture the central artery through the abdomen and chest, with dangerous consequences.