A Guide on Buying Blood Pressure Monitors
High blood pressure has been a rampant issue in the United States. In fact, one out of three adults is diagnosed with high blood pressure. People need to monitor the blood pressure to ensure that they are able to keep it at an acceptable level. It would be too much of a hassle for them to keep returning to a clinic or hospital just to get their blood pressures check. It is therefore advisable for a person to just go ahead and invest in his own blood pressure monitor. This guide will help the person to choose which blood pressure monitor he should
Understand first what high blood pressure means and how a blood pressure works.
High blood pressureis also called hypertension. This is a situation wherein the force applied on the walls of the arteries and blood vessels has risen above normal. The problem with this is that there really is no immediate symptom when it happens; people could go on living not knowing that they are experiencing high blood pressure. If people do not do anything to address this, they could be prone to coronary heart disease, stroke, or even kidney failure.
Using a blood pressure monitor would enable the person to know whether his blood pressure is normal or not. A blood pressure monitor is also called a sphygmomanometer. It has a cuff that is placed around the upper arm, which would inflate when the monitor is being used. The cuff would then restrict the blood flow and a mechanical device would be checking the measurements of the pressure there. A normal reading of blood pressure is any range below 120/80 mmHg, or millimeters of Mercury. To understand more on how to understand the readings, it would be best to ask the local nurse on a quick crash course on how the blood pressure monitor works.
Differentiate the different kinds of blood pressure monitor.
Blood pressure monitors come in different styles. The main criteria in choosing a blood pressure monitor should be on how convenient and easy it is to use when the user has to check his own blood pressure. From the range of blood pressure monitors available in the market, all of these models could be classified into three.
The first kind would be the automatic arm monitor. It is considered to be the most convenient and easy to use monitor. Its readings are also the most accurate of all other blood pressure monitor. The arm cuff of this monitor inflates automatically and on its own. After a few moments, it would then be giving readings on a digital display.
The second type of blood pressure monitor is the manual arm monitor. As the name implies, a person has to manually inflate the arm cuff using a bulb. Most of the models of the manual arm monitor do not have the digital display available for automatic arm monitor. To get the proper readings, a person should use this monitor in combination with a stethoscope. The readings are most likely presented on an oval dial with a needle that points to the resulting numbers.
The last of the three types of blood pressure monitor is the wrist monitor. Just as the name shows, this monitor is differentiated by the lack of arm cuff. In place of the missing cuff is a smaller cuff that is placed on the wrist. According to people, this is more convenient to use and the procedure is also quite easy. The problem with this type of monitor is that the readings are not as accurate as those produced in using a monitor that relies on the upper arm pressure.
Know who will administer and how closely it would be monitored.
From the previously mentioned types of monitor, a person should choose which one is most convenient for him. This includes knowing whether he is the one administering the reading of the blood pressure or he has an assistant in doing so. For the types of monitor, it is not advised for a person to buy the manual arm monitor when he has no other people to aid him in using it. The manual arm monitor is slightly troublesome in that the placing of the stethoscope should be done properly while the cuff is being inflated through a bulb. For people who are in a critical blood pressure level, it would be best for them to be monitored regularly. Their readings should also be as accurate as possible. The wrist monitor therefore is not suggested in these kinds of situation, as a faulty reading may be the cause of a great health drawback.
Look at the additional features.
The blood pressure monitor has a wide range of features that are not focused solely on getting the blood pressure measurements. There are a lot of other features that provide other pieces of information that would help the person monitor his blood pressure. There are also those made simply for added convenience for the person.
The most popular feature is the digital display. A digital display removes the necessity to look at the circular dial closely and identify the exact point the needle has stopped. One only has to glance at the digital display to see the numbers produced from the readings this would work best especially when the eyesight of the person is terribly failing him. There are blood pressure monitors that have really large digital displays on them, helping the user to read the numbers better. There are also those that light up or have illuminated background, just in case one has to do a reading in a place with relatively low light. Even better, there are blood pressure monitors that read out loud the readings, removing the need to look at the display and ensuring that the blind could use it safely.
Another feature is the heart rate monitor. There are people who need to monitor not only their blood pressure but also their heart rate, as these two are basically related and affect each other. This additional feature eliminates an extra effort of the person to get his heart rate.