What is Blood Pressure!
Blood Pressure is the measure of the force which the heart needs to pump the blood through the circulatory system and supply the vital organs of our body. the higher the blood pressure the harder the heart has to work.
The body’s blood pressure does not remain constant, but fluctuates all the time.
POINTS TO OBSERVE WHEN MONITORING BLOOD PRESSURE
- Always measure your blood pressure when you are relaxed.
- Preferably take blood pressure measurement before breakfast.
- Take blood pressure at room temperature Approx: 20 degrees Celsius.
- Blood pressure rises after drinking hot drinks, smoking, situations of anxiety, exertion or emotion.
- Gentle breathing for five to six minutes before measuring your blood pressure. by doing this it allows your blood pressure to stabilise.
MONITORING AT HOME
By checking your blood pressure at home it will provide you with many benefits.
It offers you more control over your treatment. It also allows you to keep track of your results in between visits to your doctor or nurse.
Many people when visiting the doctors to have their blood pressure taken are nervous and therefore their blood pressure will be higher. By monitoring your blood pressure in the surroundings of you own home will give you a true reading due to the fact many people are more comfortable and relaxed there.
Home Use Upper Arm Monitors
There are many different types of monitors on the market for home use. They range from your simple upper arm monitor to your monitor that is linked to you home or work computer so that results can be downloaded gradually. These offer you more flexibility around home and also offer the individual a chance to monitor there blood pressure more closely over tighter periods of time.
Home Use Wrist Monitors
Wrist monitors are very easy to use. they offer people slightly more flexibility than a traditional home use monitor due to the fact that it is very small and can be worn like a watch. The specifications can vary according to the type of monitor you buy. The simple monitors will store a small amount of readings for you will others will come with the option to have a computer link or printer attachment for the device. Aswell as this some will be able to store up to about 50 readings. These sorts of monitors are perfect for people that are on the move a lot and also for people that have lack of storage space as they are the wrist monitor are an oversized watch.
BLOOD PRESSURE MONITORING
Home BP monitoring can play an important role in the management of patients suffering from conditions such as hypertension, diabetes, raised or lowered blood pressure, stroke and heart disorders.
Blood Pressure Monitoring Hints
Typical Applications are in Pregnancy, Diabetes, Hypertension.
Compact Wrist and Upper Arm BP monitors are facilitating patient self monitoring of blood pressure. This is important for mother and baby during pregnancy, to minimise long term complications of diabetes and hypertension, and patients with hardened arteries and poor circulation.
- B P measurement is most commonly performed antenatal procedure.
- Hypertension complicates more than 10% of pregnancies.
- 20% of adults in the UK have high blood pressure.
- Detection and treatment of high blood pressure can have a major impact on morbidity associated with hypertension.
- Automated BP monitors have advantages over traditional sphygmomanometers and can be used in the home, pharmacy, hospital and clinic and results monitored.
What is ‘Blood Pressure?
Blood pressure is the measure of the force which the heart needs to pump the blood through the circulatory system and supply the vital organs of our body. The higher the pressure the harder the heart must work.
What is ‘Normal Blood Pressure?
________________________Systolic (mmHg)___________Diastolic (mmHg)
Hypotension ________________ less than 100 ____________ less than 60
Normal_____________________less than = 139____________ less than = 85
Borderline___________________140 – 159 ________________ 86 – 99
Hypertension ________________more than 160 _____________ over 99
What is ‘Hypertension’ (High Blood Pressure) and why is it harmful? If parts of the blood transport system are constricted, diseased, or not functioning normally, the blood pressure can be higher than normal. High blood pressure can damage vital organs such as the brain, heart, kidneys and liver. The worst situation can lead to a catastrophic stroke.
Benefits of Measuring Blood Pressure and Procedures Blood pressure is constantly changing throughout the day caused by factors such as anxiety, exercise, smoking, caffeine and stress. Blood pressure should always be measured at the same time each day when the body is relaxed. Readings of blood pressure should be interpreted and analyzed by a clinical physician. Measurement of blood pressure on a regular basis should not be considered as a representation that by doing so will in itself improve healthcare unless as part of the overall management of the condition which should at all times be under the supervision of a suitably qualified and experienced medical practitioner. (Applicable to all conditions) Blood pressure has traditionally been measured by placing a cuff round the upper arm.
Automatic BP monitors can be used to take this measurement at home, in the pharmacy, clinic and hospital. Recent technology has led to the development of a wrist monitors which allow measurement of blood pressure by placing a cuff round the wrist. By inflating the cuff the artery is compressed until the blood flow is stopped. When the pressure in the inflated cuff is released a connection is established between the pressure in the cuff and the blood pressure. Modern blood pressure monitors use advanced technical components and materials to measure the pressure, process the signals and display the values on a liquid-crystal display. Most blood pressure monitors also measure and display pulse rate.
Hints on obtaining accurate Blood Pressure Measurements Blood pressure is changing constantly and erratic readings do sometimes occur. Patient should not be alarmed or be pleased by a few poor or good readings. B P changes with state of mind during the day, at different times of the month, is influenced by time of year and temperature. Maintaining a full record of readings assists in the management of patient welfare.
Regular physician consultations should occur to manage the condition. – Wait for one hour after a substantial meal before measuring blood pressure. – Do not smoke or drink alcohol before measuring blood pressure. – Physical work should not be undertaken for one hour before measuring blood pressure – It is traditional to relax for 15 minutes prior to measuring BP – Blood pressure should not be measured if under stress or tension as stress and tension raise blood pressure unless such measurements are within a program. – Blood pressure should be taken when at normal body temperature, not when feeling hot or cold. If a Blood pressure monitor is stored at a very low temperature, it should be kept in a warm place for at least an hour before use. – An interval of at least 5 minutes should be allowed between readings.
When measuring blood pressure the elbow and arm should be placed on a table or suitable support and be at the same level as the heart. Be seated in a comfortable position, to breathe 5 or 6 times, and relax
Blood pressure should be measured at the same time every day.
Results should be recorded then shown to the patient physician for assessment.