Hypertension has become one of the significant health problems affecting people worldwide, so its accurate evaluation is of extreme importance for its early diagnosis and management. But the concerns associated with mercury’s potential ill effects on environment and health have led to an increase in the use of non-mercury sphygmomanometers (BP machine) compared to the mercury sphygmomanometers.
There are two types of non-mercury sphygmomanometers. They are:
- Aneroid sphygmomanometers: These are commonly used mechanical type machines with a dial and may require calibration, unlike mercury sphygmomanometers, but they are supposed to be handled manually by trained practitioners and yield only the systolic pressure.
- Digitalsphygmomanometers: These may use manual or automatic inflation, both the types being electronic and can be operated easily without any training.
Usage of digital BP machines:
- A digital BP machine also has a cuff that wraps around the arm. You may need to use a rubber squeeze ball to inflate the cuff in some, whereas others have a push-button for automatic inflation.
- After cuff’s inflation, the pressure will drop slowly, and the screen will show the digital readout of systolic and diastolic blood.
- The regular reading should be around 120 for systolic and 80 for diastolic, and if the readings are consistently higher or lower, you should consult a doctor.
- After the blood pressure is displayed, deflation of the cuff will occur on its own.
- The readings in a digital blood pressure monitor will not be precise if the body of the patient is moving while using it. Also, the readings will become less accurate if the heart rate is irregular. However, digital monitors remain the best choice for most people.
To measure the blood pressure correctly, you should practice with your provider using the monitor. The upper arm should be at the heart level, and feet should be on the floor. Also, it would help if you do not take the blood pressure when you are under stress, had caffeine, have exercised, or had an intake of any tobacco product in the last 30 minutes.
Benefits of digital BP machines:
With these digital BP machines, you have access to the same high-precision blood pressure monitors that are used by the doctors. In addition to that, your results can help the doctor to make the diagnosis because you can take repeated readings at home over a long period, thus keeping a record of all the fluctuations.
Some digital blood pressure monitors can even transfer your readings to your smartphone so that you can track the progress, get a deeper understanding of your health, and share the results with your doctor. It’s not a medical disposable equipment because you can use it multiple times as it’s digital equipment.
If you are diagnosed with high blood pressure or want to keep a record of your health, a BP monitor is a must to have medical equipment for keeping your numbers under control. Also, when deciding about which blood pressure monitor you need to buy, a couple of factors should be considered depending upon your needs and lifestyle.