When you monitor blood pressure at home, it is important to understand how to properly do it. Several factors can influence the reading you receive. Factors, such as exercise, can lead to a false reading that could be detrimental to your health in the long run. If you are unsure of how to monitor blood pressure, the following guide will help you to understand how to do so and what to do in case your readings are abnormal. A proper measurement of your blood pressure will take practice. It may take several readings before you are confident in the results that you receive when you monitor blood pressure at home.
Ensure that the blood pressure monitor you are using fits. The cuff of the blood pressure monitor should fit snugly around your upper arm. If it does not, you will not be able to accurately monitor blood pressure readings.
Start the blood pressure monitor and be still. Do not monitor blood pressure if you are moving around. Doing so can lead to an inaccurate reading.
Sit in your chair correctly when you are attempting to monitor blood pressure. Your back should be straight and supported by a solid surface. Place your feet flat on the ground. Your upper arm should be at heart level to ensure an accurate reading of your blood pressure. The owner's manual of your blood pressure monitor should include an illustration that depicts how you should sit while taking a blood pressure reading.
Monitor blood pressure at the same time each day. For instance, you can choose to monitor blood pressure at noon of each day. By performing a reading at the same time each day, you can help your medical professional to determine if there is a fluctuation in your readings that could be indicative of either too high or too low blood pressure. Always try to ensure that the blood pressure reading is taken in the same environment.
Record your blood pressure readings each day. It is important to not skip a reading after you monitor blood pressure. The reading should be written as it is displayed. Store the reading in a safe location. You can show your medical professional the reading to help him or her determine if your blood pressure levels are where they should be.
Contact your medical professional if you have more than five high blood pressure readings in a row. If the top number, or systolic, is 180 or higher and the bottom number, or diastolic, is 110 or higher consecutively, you are in need of medical attention. High blood pressure is a sign of heart disease or other stresses that could lead to a medical emergency. When you contact your medical professional, inform him or her of the reading and ask for the earliest appointment possible.
Do not monitor blood pressure within 30 minutes of smoking, drinking caffeinated drinks or exercising. These activities can lead to false readings that may lead you to believe that your blood pressure is higher than it actually is.
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