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You need to follow some important steps for an accurate home blood pressure monitoring. Manual and digital blood pressure monitor have specific instructions that accompany them. Hence, follow these instructions carefully for accurate results. Here are the steps to take your own blood pressure on your left arm. If you’re going to be taking your blood pressure on your right arm, just reverse the instructions whenever they state left.
Start by Locating Your Pulse
Simply put light pressure on your index and middle fingers and press them slightly to the inner center location in the bend of your elbow. This is where the brachial artery is located. If you can’t find your pulse, use the stethoscope that is with your manual monitor to locate it.
Secure the Blood Pressure Monitor Cuff
Now you’ll want to slide the blood pressure monitor cuff onto your arm. Ensure that the head of the stethoscope is over your artery. The blood pressure monitor cuff may have a star, arrow, or diamond to point to the stethoscope head. The lower edge of the blood pressure monitor cuff should rest comfortably against your bend in your elbow. The fabric connector will adjust the cuff to fit properly. Don’t adjust it too tightly. Just secure it. Put the stethoscope earbuds into your ears and tilt them to adjust for the best sound.
Inflate the Blood Pressure Monitor Cuff
To get an accurate reading you’ll have to inflate the blood pressure monitor cuff. Also, hold your arm straight for a more accurate reading. If you’re releasing the pressure too fast, you’re not going to get an accurate reading either. Don’t inflate it again immediately; always wait at least one minute before you take it again. Reapply the cuff and begin again.
Write It Down
Write your blood pressure readings accurately and be sure that you’re following your doctor’s instructions on how frequently you should be measuring your blood pressure. Also record the date and the time and the top and bottom numbers (systolic and diastolic). Also be sure that you note any recent activity including eating, exercising, stressors, and the like.
Annually you should have your doctor check your blood pressure monitor for accuracy. This will be done by simply comparing your readings with the readings of the doctor’s blood pressure machine.