Blood Pressure Review
If you have been advised by the surgery to submit your blood pressure readings on a regular basis please use this form.
Before you measure your blood pressure
- Avoid things that can raise your blood pressure in the short term. Don’t measure your blood pressure within half an hour of eating, smoking, drinking caffeinated drinks such as coffee, or exercising. These can all raise your blood pressure temporarily. If you need to use the toilet, go before you measure your blood pressure.
- Wear loose-fitting clothes. Wear a short-sleeved t-shirt or something with sleeves you can push up easily, nothing tight. This is so that you can fit the cuff around your arm.
- Rest for five minutes before you take your reading. Sit down somewhere quiet, ideally at a desk or table. Have your back supported with your arm resting on a firm surface and your feet flat on the floor. Stay in this position while you take your blood pressure.
- Make sure your arm is supported and at the same level as your heart. Position yourself so that your arm is resting on a surface and is at the same height as your heart. Keep your arm and hand relaxed, not tensed.
- Make sure you are relaxed and comfortable. If you are anxious or uncomfortable, your blood pressure will rise temporarily.
How to measure your blood pressure at home using a home monitor
- Follow the instructions that came with your monitor. Make sure you place the cuff around your arm as described in the instructions.
- Place the arm cuff just above your elbow. The cuff should be about 2cm above your elbow to make sure it can detect the artery in your arm, just under the skin.
- Keep still and quiet while you take your reading. Moving, chewing, talking and laughing can affect your reading. Make sure you don’t cross your legs, as this will raise your reading too.
- Take two or three readings, each about one to two minutes apart. If your first reading is much higher than the next, ignore it and take an extra reading. Once you have two to three readings, you can work out the average.
- Keep a record of your measurements. Record all your readings in the memory of your monitor, on your computer or phone or on paper – whichever you prefer. Write them down exactly as they appear on screen.