Don’t Do It When Taking Blood Pressure: Top 3 Mistakes

Blood pressure shows how well the body’s cardiovascular system is functioning. It is determined by using blood pressure monitors. The most correct blood pressure is now considered to be 130-139/85-89 mmHg in adults.

What not to do before measuring the pressure – important tips

To get the most correct result, it is important to remember what mistakes you should not make when measuring blood pressure and before the procedure.

Doctors strictly forbid:

  • use eye and nasal drops (if used, you need to wait at least two hours);
  • drink strong coffee or tea, eat, drink alcoholic drinks, or smoke (you must wait at least half an hour afterward before the measurement);
  • Exercise the body (15 minutes before the procedure it is necessary to relax, sit or lie down as much as possible).

Also, remember that it is best to measure blood pressure in a sitting position. The reason why you should not measure your blood pressure standing up is quite simple. In this position, there is a risk that the index will be distorted.

It is necessary to exclude as much as possible any external irritants, for example, turning off the computer, TV, or loud music.

During the procedure, you can not talk or move.

How to measure pressure – simple rules

There are two types of tonometers – mechanical and electronic (or automatic). The second is more modern and convenient.

Mechanical tonometer. This type of meter is put on the hand about two centimeters above the bend of the elbow. At the same time, to listen to the heartbeat, the membrane of the phonendoscope is placed in the bend itself. When these preparations are made, you need to close the valve of the bulb and squeeze it, thus filling the cuff with air. After that, the valve of the bulb should be gradually loosened, letting the air out gently and obtaining the result of the measurement.

Electronic tonometer. This type of meter is also worn on the hand or wrist. The alternative – as in the case of a mechanical tonometer – is two centimeters above the bend of the elbow. Wearing the cuff, sit quietly for 2-3 minutes, and press the button. Then the device will do everything itself and show the result of the measurement.

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Written by Emma Miller

I am a registered dietitian nutritionist and own a private nutrition practice, where I provide one-on-one nutritional counseling to patients. I specialize in chronic disease prevention/ management, vegan/ vegetarian nutrition, pre-natal/ postpartum nutrition, wellness coaching, medical nutrition therapy, and weight management.

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