BP Basics

Monitoring blood pressure at home is better than doctor’s clinic!

Monitoring blood pressure is the best way of getting accurate blood pressure when you are at home. The American heart institute and other health organizations have come up with the views that the best results of blood pressure come out when a person is at home. Visiting a doctor may cause white coat hypertension- a psychological phenomenon when your blood pressure automatically increases in a doctor’s clinic.

For measuring blood pressure at your home you will need a sphygmomanometer. There are basically three types of blood pressure monitors including mercury, aneroid and digital or automatic. All of them have some advantages and disadvantages that you might face while monitoring this blood pressure.

Mercury sphygmomanometer: This is not usually recommended for home monitoring since this kind of monitor is bulky and need the assistance. Yet, it is durable and has the caliber to give accurate readings and is still used by doctors and professionals in their clinics. Some major disadvantages are-

The spilt mercury can be hazardous.
Reading a mercury monitor requires skill. The gauge must be read at eye level.

Aneroid sphygmomanometer: A lightweight, portable and inexpensive blood pressure monitoring machine. Its advantage over mercury blood pressure monitor is that it may work in any position. Some of them have extra large gauge for taking the readings more accurate. Yet, monitoring blood pressure with aneroid blood pressure is not so easy. They are very delicate and have confusing mechanisms and are also more vulnerable to damages that might require factory replacement or repair. The D- ring cuffs are not so easy to apply by oneself.

Automatic blood pressure monitors: A one unit system more easy to use than the above mentioned ones. They are easy to use and have applications to indicate errors. There are arm cuffs as well as wrist cuff monitors in this category. Some manufactures have introduced the finger cuff digital monitors, too. Automatic deflation and inflation system is also available with most advanced models.

Some of the digital monitors give out print-outs of the readings, yet they are not free from disadvantages- they are very fragile and have very sensitive kind of mechanism. Secondly, they are sensitive to body movements and you need to keep a constant check for accuracy. The cuffs sizes and positioning of these cuffs also need proper care.

Monitoring blood pressure will require any of these sphygmomanometers, so no need to worry about the disadvantages since nothing in this world is perfect.