How does a blood pressure monitor work?
A blood pressure monitor consists of a measuring device and an inflatable band. This band comes to the upper arm at the height of the heart and is filled with air, until it squeezes the blood supply. Then the air slowly leaves the band and the blood starts flowing again. The moment the blood starts to flow again, it causes a vibration. This vibration is used by the measuring device to calculate the excess pressure. As the tyre deflates and the blood starts to flow normally again, the vibration stops. At that moment the negative pressure is recorded.
What is positive pressure and what is negative pressure?
Upper pressure is the pressure with which the blood is pumped through the blood vessels at the time the heart is contracting. This is also called the systolic blood pressure. Diastolic pressure is the pressure of the blood when the heart relaxes. This is also called diastolic blood pressure.
What is a reliable blood pressure monitor?
There are two different types of blood pressure meters on the market; the wrist blood pressure meter and the upper arm blood pressure meter. The Heart Foundation recommends the latter because a wrist blood pressure meter is more sensitive to errors.
A reliable blood pressure monitor is for example our Microlife BP A1 Easy. This is included in the list of reliable meters which meets the requirements of STRIDE BP. This organization examines and determines the reliability of various blood pressure meters available.
How to measure blood pressure
With a good blood pressure monitor you can measure your blood pressure yourself, but how do you do that in the right way? The pressure changes constantly throughout the day, at exercise will be higher than at rest. You should therefore follow the steps below in order to obtain a measurement which is as reliable as possible.
Make sure you are relaxed before the measurement, sit down quietly for 5 minutes. It is also important not to drink coffee, smoke, take medication or exert yourself in any way for at least half an hour before the measurement. These factors can all cause your blood pressure to rise.
Always measure on the arm that is least active (the non-dominant arm). So if you are on the right, measure on the left and vice versa. Place the belt on a bare upper arm, at the height of the heart. Do not put the tape too tightly around your arm, allow a thumb to fit between the two.
Take the measurement sitting upright in a chair with your back against the backrest. Keep your feet together on the floor. The arm with the tape should be relaxed on the table or chair back.
Make the measurement with the device on.
Put the device on and the measurement will start, when finished it will stop automatically. During the measurement you should not talk, this affects the pressure. When the measurement is finished, take a minute to rest and take another measurement. (There are meters that do this automatically). It is recommended to take 3 readings within 10 minutes and average them. It is also recommended to take a second reading.
Save the results of the measurement so you can compare the next measurement or ask your doctor for advice. Note the upper pressure, lower pressure and the date of measurement.
What is normal blood pressure?
The lower the blood pressure, the better. Too high blood pressure increases the risk of cardiovascular disease. When blood pressure is below the average normal values, we speak of low blood pressure. In general, this causes few problems and poses no threat to health.
Why measure blood pressure?
As we age, our blood vessels become stiffer. This leads to a higher. Already from 40 years the chance of increased blood pressure. It is therefore sensible to have your blood pressure measured annually from the age of 40. If it then turns out that the blood pressure is too high, you will be in time to do something about it. Generally speaking, there is little to show for hypertension, but the consequences can be serious. It is a real silent killer. All the more reason to keep a close eye on your health.
For people taking medicines which can influence blood pressure, it is also important to take regular measurements. If necessary, measures can then be taken to bring the pressure down.
A hypertension has many causes and often you can reduce the pressure yourself. Some causes of high blood pressure are for example smoking, obesity, unhealthy eating (a lot of fat and/or salt) and alcohol consumption. Changing your lifestyle in these cases can be life-saving.
Buy a blood pressure monitor
Measuring your own blood pressure? Of course you can buy a reliable blood pressure monitor at Nobraa. Keep a close eye on your health so that you can take measures in good time. Do you have any questions about our blood pressure meters? Then feel free to contact us, we will be happy to advise you.