World Hypertension Day: How to monitor your blood pressure at home

High blood pressure can lead to heart diseases and stroke if left untreated. Here's how you can monitor your blood pressure at home without any hassle to keep your levels in check.
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Keep a check on your blood pressure levels. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock
Arushi Bidhuri Updated: 17 Oct 2023, 18:32 pm IST
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High blood pressure or hypertension occurs when the pressure of blood pushing against the walls of your arteries is too much for them to handle. An increase in your blood pressure levels can increase the risk of heart disease and stroke, two of the leading causes of mortality across the globe. One of the best ways to reduce the risk is by checking your blood pressure on a regular basis. This World Hypertension Day, let’s look at how you can measure your blood pressure at home.

Referred to as a ‘silent killer’, hypertension does not show any significant symptoms. So, many people may not know that they have hypertension unless they suffer a heart attack or stroke. That, undoubtedly, is not an ideal scenario. So, it is best to measure your blood pressure levels on a regular basis to avoid complications. Also, you can’t go to a doctor every time to get your blood pressure checked.So the best way is to have the right equipment to measure blood pressure at home.

How to measure high blood pressure
Know how to measure high blood pressure levels. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

How to measure blood pressure at home?

Health Shots asked Dr Ashutosh Shukla, Senior Director and Medical Advisor, Max Hospital, Gurugram, to help us understand the right way to measure your blood pressure at home. Since keeping a check on your vital health parameters is important, here’s to correctly measure your blood pressure at home.

Also Read: 10 quick tricks to bring your high blood pressure down

1. Choose the right equipment

You will need a good quality blood pressure monitor. You can choose a digital monitor which has a screen that displays the readings. Make sure the cuff fits properly on your upper arm. Avoid instruments that measure BP at the wrist.

2. Prepare for the measurement

Before taking your blood pressure, you should avoid smoking, exercise, and caffeine for at least 30 minutes.

3. Apply the cuff

Place the cuff around your upper arm and adjust it so it fits snugly. Make sure there is more gap than two fingers between the cuff and your arm.

4. Take the reading

Place the monitor at the level of your heart. Sit back on your chair and relax. Press the start button on your monitor. It will inflate the cuff and then slowly release the air. The monitor will display your systolic (top number) and diastolic (bottom number) blood pressure readings.

5. Record the results

Don’t forget to note your blood pressure readings along with the date and time of recording them. Keep track of your readings over time and share them with your doctors and follow their advice and prescribed medications.

Know your blood pressure levels

When you measure your blood pressure, you will see two numbers appear – one at the top and one at the bottom. But do you know which one number indicates what? Dr Shukla shares that the top number is the systolic pressure and the bottom number is the diastolic pressure. The systolic pressure shows the maximum pressure created in your arteries and the diastolic pressure is the minimum pressure created in your arteries.

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Also Read: Warning signs your artery is blocked: Here’s how to prevent heart attack

Here are the normal and increased blood pressure levels you should know about:

  • Normal blood pressure: Systolic pressure below 120 mm Hg and diastolic pressure below 80 mm Hg (less than 120/80 mm Hg)
  • Elevated blood pressure: Systolic pressure between 120 and 129 mm Hg, and diastolic pressure below 80 mm Hg (between 120/80 mm Hg and 129/80 mm Hg).
    Now that you know what elevated blood pressure levels look like, you need to know the stages of hypertension and when you should be worried.
Measure blood pressure
Know how you measure your blood pressure levels. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

Stage 1 hypertension

A systolic blood pressure between 130 and 139 mm Hg, and diastolic pressure between 80 and 89 mm Hg (between 130/80 mm Hg and 139/89 mm Hg).

Stage 2 hypertension

A systolic pressure of 140 mm Hg or higher, and a diastolic pressure of 90 mm Hg or higher (140/90 mm Hg or higher).

If your blood pressure levels are increased, you should consult your health adviser to avoid complications and keep diseases at bay.

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About the Author

Arushi Bidhuri is a journalist with 7 years of experience in writing, editing, and conceptualizing story ideas across different genres, including health and wellness, lifestyle, politics, beauty, fashion, and more. Arushi has a strong connection in the industry that helps her write concise and original stories as she believes in working towards writing pieces that can enlighten people. ...Read More

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