Blood pressure is often measured using an arm or a wristband. Many people have an at-home device, so they can monitor their levels at their convenience.
When blood pressure readings are done correctly, it can be a guide as to whether or not your treatment and lifestyle habits are working successfully. But there are a lot of factors that can affect your blood pressure reading and give you skewed results.
Here are seven common factors that can affect your blood pressure reading so that you can be sure to get a more accurate one.
7 Factors That Impact Blood Pressure Readings
Having a full bladder: Avoid taking your blood pressure if you need to urinate. Having a full bladder can add 10 to 15 points to your reading.
Having your feet dangle: Make sure your feet are planted on the ground and you are sitting on a high chair or doctor table as it can increase readings by six to 10 points.
Moving your legs: Having your legs crossed or moving can increase readings by two to eight points.
Hanging your arm: Your arm should be resting on a flat surface. Having it hang can increase your blood pressure 10 or more points higher.
Not placing the cuff in the right position: The cuff should be wrapped around a bare arm. Having it on top of clothing can increase a reading by 50 points.
Using the wrong size cuff: Ensure your cuff properly fits you as an ill-fitting cuff can increase your blood pressure reading by up to 10 points.
Don’t talk: Talking during a blood pressure reading can make your results 10 points higher.
By avoiding these factors, you can achieve a more accurate blood pressure which can guide your treatment efforts.