Many of our patients now choose to measure their Blood Pressure at home with an electronic Blood Pressure monitor.
This can be particularly useful if you are known to suffer from 'White Coat Hypertension'. The 'White Coat' effect is a reference to the white coats that were traditionally worn by doctors and how having your blood pressure taken in a medical setting can lead to falsely elevated readings.
Which Blood Pressure Monitor should I use?
The British Hypertensive Society have approved the following Blood Pressure machines for home monitoring.
How do I take the readings?
When your blood pressure is measured you should be seated with your arm stretched out and supported, for example on the arm of a chair or a cushion. You should be quiet and relaxed, and not too hot or cold.
You should measure your blood pressure twice a day, ideally once in the morning and once in the evening, while you are sitting down.
Each time you do this, you should take two readings, at least 1 minute apart.
You should continue to measure your blood pressure twice daily for at least 4 days and ideally for 7 days.
PLEASE PRINT AND COMPLETE THE FOLLOWING BLOOD PRESSURE DIARY AND SEE THE GP. REMEMBER TO CALCULATE YOUR AVERAGE BP!!
HOME BLOOD PRESSURE DIARY
* If you suffer from Atrial Fibrillation (an irregular heart beat) it will be better to see the nurse for a manual BP check as this is more accurate.
* If your Blood Pressure is > or = to 180 mmHg systolic (top number) or 110 mmHg Diastolic (bottom number) then you should see your GP immediately.
What lifestyle changes can I make to help reduce my Blood Pressure?
Adapted from NICE Clinical Guidance on Hypertension