Measuring blood pressure correctly

To get reliable blood pressure values, it is important to know how to check your blood preasure correctly.

A single measure will never be more than a sample and is not able of telling you about if your blood pressure is fine or not. Therefore measure as often as possible at different times of the day. But don’t forget to wait atleast 5-10 minutes between measuring. You should measure in times when you are calm but you can also check in times of higher activity. The more checks you do the rather you know what your usual blood pressure is like and how to categorize your blood pressure.

What you should care about when you check your blood pressure:

Many things can have influence on your blood pressure. To get reliable results please do the following:

  • before the check take atleast a 5 minute break
  • check multiple times a day
  • keep the pressure sleeve on the height of your heart (lift arm a bit)
  • don’t drink anything before checking, fluids influent the blood pressure (especiall alcohol, coffee and tea)
  • don’t check your blood pressure immediately after smoking

Which arm is the right one to check your blood pressure?

Many times we get asked which arm is the right one for the blood pressure check? On the side of the heart or on the opposite site? The answer is: You will have to find out yourself. Many people do have different blood pressures on each side. The reason is not only the heart but the tissue und the structure of the vessels in your arms. There can be a difference on up to 20 mmHg on left and right.

So find out which arm shows you the higher values. This arm should be used for further blood pressure checks.

Finding the right blood pressure meter (sphygmomanometer)

A correctly functioning blood pressure meter is important to give you reliable values of your blood pressure. Many people still rely on the classic measuring methodig with stethoscope and upper arm pressure sleeve. But it requires skill to measure this way.

Therefore it is much easier to use an easy to handle electronic blood pressure meter. Over time they got more and more precise and they are very reliable by now to classify your blood pressure.

If you suffer from heart rhythm disorders it is very much recommended to use a device that can detect those.

Check another value?

Change the numbers in the field

(upper value):
(lower value):

45 thoughts on “Measuring blood pressure correctly”

  1. always having isolated diastolic hypertension ( 120\100 and sometime 130\100) i’ve tried many drugs but they don’t go less than 110|95 which is the best result << i suffer from mild dyslipidemia , what can i do

  2. I am a 57 year old male. I work out 6 times a week, run half-marathons and eat right. I take BP medication. My blood pressure is 135/76 with a heart rate of 57. Is this a concern?

  3. even if the BP is low say <130 < 60, and there are no symptoms of low BP, what shall be done to increase the levels.
    Patient is Sr. citizen woman ageing 76.
    what is the reason and solution?

    1. BP of 130/60 is not considered low, a normal BP is consider <120/<80
      So your question should not be what can be done to increase these levels, it should be trying to preserve these levels for a Sr citizen. BP levels also have different ranges depending on various factors such as age, race, and general health.
      Please take note that I am not a medical professional, it is that I have just lately had to educate myself on BP due to having a high reading at my last doctors visit, so I have read a fare amount on the subject over the past two months.
      one last note: Talk to your doctor to just verify that your BP is probably just fine for someone at your stage of life.
      Hope this answers your question 🙂

  4. I’m 67, 190 lbs. lightheaded, feel faint, feel nauseous, either sitting or standing. Gets worse while standing. Blood pressure is 93/58. I’m female. Is this something to bring to my doctors attention.

    1. jennifer garcia

      yes and know if worse when standing or upon standing than i would do a POTS BP check. Check while laying down then upon standing check @ 1min, 2min, 3min, 5min. If you notice a jump of more than 30 BPM and it is sustained for more than 5 min. Talk to your Doctor about Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome( POTS). I know because my son and I suffer from it. Good luck

  5. My reading is 127/55. Good or bad? This morning the top reading was 174 and can’t remember bottom reading.

  6. The Blood Pressure Machine I’m using not only gives the B/P readings, ie 125/77 but also color codes each reading with Green for a good reading, yellow for a caution and red for the CALL FOR THE AMBULANCE! I check mine twice daily, in the morning and the evening. I only check after I’ve allowed myself to be relaxed. I’m always in the 120’s/70’s range. Thank the Lord

    1. Are ppl really this stupid

      Tim, I’m happy for you that your BP is so good and that you have such a high tech machine to check it with. But what’d you do – read all the comments about the people with bad BP issues and decided that you needed to tell all these people how good you’re doing and how awesome your BP monitoring machine?

      It’s good that you thanked the Lord, but I guarantee you there aren’t and will never be anyone that will thank you or benefit from your self fulfilling and useless bragging on an article that are visited/read by people that are in need of help. I highly doubt anyone gives a flying piece of excrement, muchless needs to read a comment from a guy bragging about his BP and his BP machine.

      SMH…you must be in your mid fifties and retired to take the time out of your day to make such a comment in an article like this.

      1. Seriously? Tim posted a helpful positive comment. I’m sorry you’re so unhappy and I hope you get better soon. Ps. People don’t retire at 50, and your comment probably took more time to write than his.

    1. YES it appears to be high, but to determine more accurately on your reading, you need to take more samplings of your BP to see if it may of been a bad reading when you had it taken.

      Note: normal BP is considered <120/<80

      The reason I had mentioned that was due to having my last doctors office BP reading of 150/76, so I went out and purchased a electronic BP monitor and have taken over 75 reading since that point in time, and I have not had a single reading over 123/77
      so it appears that I must of not had a very good reading at my doctors office last visit.

      You may wish to speak with your doctor, sooner rather than later,if after taking additional reading you still get reading over 120/80 I.M.H.O

  7. I take meds. for high blood pressure, also have cond., called, ( T-Wave Inversion). hav.2 – min. clog., art’s. I’m 56 yrs old, female. Have many health issues, recent-rare disease diag.,back Surg.more to come. Neck surgery., Poss. Knee surgery. Also hav Barrett’s esophagus disease, IBS w constipation, hern., Ulcers, 2. *** Just started journey, to find out what rare dis., I have, few poss., The name of disease. 2001, hysterectomy, still menopausal. I believe stress of worrying & wondering – rare dis. & All MEDICAL ISSUES, add 2 blood pres. Problems?????

  8. My blood pressure is 97/78. And heart rate 30 / 78. Is that normal. I feel all the time tired, have headache and other symptoms. Could you give me some information?

  9. do i need to worry if my pressure is 98/59. I dont have any symptoms and I might be dyhdrated due to the recent change in the weather–when should I be concerned

  10. my BP is 98/59 and my pulse has been over 60. Currently my mouth is dry can that be part of the dehydration problem

  11. I’m 50 years old and three readings per day almost always 140to 164 ove 90 to 113. once and a while a single reading will be lower but several times as high as the 190’s over90 to 104. should I try to see the doctor ?

  12. Just check my BP it was 198 over 166. I am a 55 year old male and yes I smoke ( wish I didn’t). Even on a good day it’s no lower than maybe 180 over 115. It’s been this way for couple of years. Talking to other people about is starting get me worried. I mean I feel ok most of the time. Do have a lot of headacks and some swelling around me ankles that started about 6 months ago. Any advise?

    1. Did you go to a doctor? I’m actually glad to see your reading has been 180 for a couple of years just because I got that reading tonight and it scared me. If you’ve been having that for two years then I suppose it won’t kill me tonight. I’m also 55 but never smoke. Started exercising for the new year and feel much better, stronger, more control over my movements, but my heart isn’t responding well. I’m going calling the doctor in the morning and will put off the gym until I get the go ahead from her. I hope you have been to a doctor by now because from what I’ve read, prolonged high bp is very hard on your body and has to be taken care of. A friend of mine who is usually anti-medication said she would never, ever leave high blood pressure untreated. Hope you’re doing ok!

  13. Hi, was checked on 11/01/2018. was 146/114 on the heart side. I am 51yrs and weight 185Kg. how worried should I be..???
    Many thanks,

  14. Hi
    Im 46
    Reading 137- 95
    I run a lot, Im starting to get like needles in my left eye and on my left side of brain, should I worry? Is this a life risk situation?
    Many thanks

  15. Tajuddin Shaikh

    Hi my BP goes very high. It’s always over 200 but some times it goes upto 265/141 8 am taking telmikind 40,shall I increase the does?

  16. Ok, check this out. I have gone to a doctors appointment and got 139/75, systolic was high, I know. Bright my BP machine to compare and see if it was accurate. So after the nurse walks out, I slap my sleeve on and sit in the text book bp checking position and I got 157/88. I stopped freaking out because every time at home, I get 105/68 to 113/72. At the doctors office my heart was pounding and breathing was rapid. As soon as I left it was like superman getting away from kryptonite. Breathing chilled out, heart slowed down and could take those cleansing deep breaths. Got home and I shot you not, it was 105/73. Yes, white coat hypertension and it sucks!


    1. Virgo,. If the sides of your head. Feel tender I would seek your Drs Advise. I was like this with headaches and feeling sleepy all the time and my Dr sent me to be checked at the hospital for Temporal Arteritis. I am not saying this is what you have but would go to see your GP.

  18. When I arise in the early morning lately my blood pressure is high, and usually after taking a 5 mg as directed, it begins to drop if I take a nap. Today, it refuses to stay down each time I move and I added two more 5 mg of meds and each time I move or talk it rises. It began today at 181 over 117 and heart at 106 or something. I’m 83 next week and have been watching this since who knows when. I have a wrist monitor which I use in a hung-down arm position and then over the chest to compare. I won’t go to emergency as have experienced negative actions at two different hospitals in different towns. Told my husband not to dial 911 unless the finds me down or unresponsive.

  19. I am a 44 yo female, weight is 190, and I’m 5’5″. My BP is 256/146 regularly. I think my lowest reading was 220/140. I do not smoke or drink. I do have regular headaches and my kidney function has been bad in past. Lower back pain too but here recently I have started to get chest pains, like a deep tearing sensation. Lasts around 3 to 5 minutes and I can usually make it go away by forcing relaxation, sounds crazy right? I have zero health insurance now and I don’t want to owe a hospital for the rest of my life…

  20. I’m a 42 year old female, 113 lbs. I exercise regularly, don’t smoke or drink. I haven’t seen a doctor in years but I suspect I may have circulatory problems. I don’t drink enough water so my blood is quite thick. Not sure if this has anything to do with it but I know I have iron deficiency anemia. I get tired throughout the day and feel I need a nap. I often get light headed/dizzy when I stand up too quickly. I also feel nauseas more than usual especially after having my blood drawn. My blood pressure reading was 76 over 48 this morning. Is there cause for concern? Thx.

  21. Pingback: Six Health Checks That You Can Do At Home ‹ Onya Magazine

  22. Timothy W. Elmer

    Hi, My name is Timothy and i’m 65. The thought of taking prescription medicine raises my bp. So i have changed my diet to keep sat fat low as well as cholesterol and sodium. I haven’t used table salt since my 20’s, and only drink iced water or herb tea (hibiscus). Most herb tea are naturally decaffeinated. Long story short, my bp is usually below 120/80.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top