Have you ever monitored your blood pressure and discovered it higher than you expected? It’s because we don’t realize that our blood pressure is constantly changing in response to our activities, mood, body position, and even some really simple changes can cause significant deviations in our blood pressure measurement. Know the factors that can temporarily affect your Blood Pressure Reading and be careful next time.
The way you sit can affect your blood pressure reading:
Notice the way you’re sitting, poor support to your feet or back while seated can raise your blood pressure reading. The proper position is seated in a chair with your back flat against the chair back and feet flat on the floor (Don’t Cross your legs, it can add more points to your reading).
The Blood Pressure Cuff:
When it comes to blood pressure cuff, it has to fit just right! If it’s too tight, you might get an inaccurately higher reading; if it’s too lose you could get a falsely low blood pressure reading.
Dehydration can lower your blood pressure readings. So, drink plenty of fluids a day before, on the day or in short, every day.
Your bathroom schedule:
Watch out! Having a full bladder can add points to your blood Pressure reading. Empty it right before your exam.
Caffeinated Beverages or tobacco:
The consumption of caffeinated drinks (Coffee, Tea, etc.) or smoking right before checkup can increase the levels of Blood Pressure. So, avoid taking it at least 30 minutes before measuring your B.P.
What you eat:
Be mindful of what you eat on the day and a night before when you’re monitoring your blood pressure. Remember, eat a healthy balanced diet with plenty of whole grains, fruits, veggies, and lean protein. Also, avoid eating salty meal, it can temporarily lead to an elevated blood pressure reading.
Whether it’s a stressful commute or anxiety related to anything, it can increase your blood pressure. For an accurate reading, it’s important to relax and rest for 3 to 5 mins quietly in a comfortable chair before a reading is taken.
Avoid talking while having your blood pressure taken, your blood pressure measurement may increase.
Blood Pressure cuff over clothing:
Placing the cuff over clothing can result in higher measurement, it should always be placed on a bare arm.
Always position your arm flat, palm facing up on a level of the surface (Table). Blood Pressure readings can get messed up if your arm is too high or low than the level of your heart or if it’s hanging in the air.