Medical experts as well as those knowledgeable about blood pressures use a device to measure BP called sphygmomanometer. This instrument consists of a cuff, pump and a certain gauge. To have an accurate reading, it is best to follow the guidelines in the manual that comes with the box as you purchase one. Be sure to read the instructions carefully and try an actual practice to make you feel at ease.
The following are some tips on how to measure your blood pressure:
• Before taking measurements, you need to take a rest and refrain from any other activity such as
eating, smoking, talking to have an accurate reading. Just be comfortable and relax for about 30
• Take the cuff and wrap it cautiously on the upper portion of your arm. Check that the cuff is the
perfect size for you. There are various sizes of cuffs available both for children and adult.
• Inflate the cuff by squeezing the pump in a timely manner and closing the valve carefully. This
will allow a temporary interruption of the blood flow in the arm for a couple of seconds.
• Place the end part of the stethoscope right on the inner portion of the elbow.
• Release air from the cuff gradually. Listen intently to a pulsing sound when the blood starts to
flow back into your arm.
• The initial sound of the pulse will be your systolic blood pressure. Record the number
immediately. Systolic refers to the force in the arteries upon a heart beat or when the heart
• Again, listen and wait for the sound to totally disappear and check on the number that is
displayed on the monitor. This is the diastolic pressure which refers to that particular pressure
of the heart in between the beat.
• You will need to repeat the procedure at least twice with an interval of a minute or two to check
the accuracy of your measurements.
• Keep your records for reference. The doctor will be basing the diagnosis of the results solely on
How BP is measured
Your blood pressure is measured by the use of a manual or digital monitor, or in some instances a wrist
BP monitor. Whichever you decide to have, it is necessary to be vigilant and accurate in your readings.
The readings will determine if you are suffering from hypertension (high blood pressure) or hypotension
(low blood pressure). And whatever the results are, it is best to immediately treat or control the
condition to avoid the occurrence of serious diseases in the future.
The results of the measurement (systolic and diastolic pressure) are generally written in fraction type. A
normal BP, for instance, is 120 (systolic)/80 (diastolic) mm Hg. BP is measured in millimeters of mercury
which is often read and written as mmHg.
Blood pressure can be prevented and controlled if diagnosed early. Remember, there are no visible
symptoms that are seen physically if a person is suffering from a high or low blood pressure. It is
therefore appropriate and healthy to have your blood pressure measured even though you are in
perfect physical conditions.