Managing and Monitoring Blood Pressure

29 September 2020

Knowing how to manage and monitor your blood pressure is critical to your overall health as it can prevent other health issues. Understanding what blood pressure is and what your healthy blood pressure number is, can help you understand quickly if something is wrong and alert you when you should seek medical advice.

What is Blood Pressure?
Blood pressure is a measure of the force that your bodies heart uses to pump blood around your body.  
There are two numbers that measure the level of blood pressure: 
  1. Systolic pressure: the pressure of the blood when your heart beats to pump blood out 
  1. Diastolic pressurethe pressure of the blood when your heart rests in between  beats 
    They are both measured in millimeters of mercury (mmHg). 
The normal level of blood pressure measures 120 (systolic) over 80 ( diastolic). Anything that is over should be checked and discussed with a doctor.   

High blood pressure is considered 140 systolic over 90 diastolic or higher.   Low blood pressure is considered 90 systolic over 60 diastolic or lower. Low blood pressure is less common. Some medicines can cause low blood pressure as a side effect. It can also be caused by several underlying conditions, including heart failure and dehydration.  

Blood pressure readings between 120/80mmHg and 140/90mmHg could mean you are at risk of developing high blood pressure if you do not take steps to keep your blood pressure under control. 

Hypertension (High Blood Pressure) is known as the “silent” killer affecting over billions  of people worldwide. It rarely has noticeable symptoms and if left untreated, it can cause stroke, heart disease and even kidney failure.  Several factors combine to raise blood pressure and high blood pressure tends to run in families.  

Those who are at higher risk of hypertension are: 
  • people with diabetes; type 1 or 2   
  • over 65 years of age  
  • people who consume large amounts of alcohol and tobacco 
  • individuals who are overweight  
  • individuals who have high cholesterol levels   
The issue with Hypertension  is that many people do not know that they have it which makes monitoring and managing blood pressure so vitally important.   

Simple steps to follow when monitoring blood  pressure at home: 

  1. Avoid smoking, exercising, drinking caffeinated beverages and alcohol within 30 minutes before measuring  
  1. Rest in a chair for 5 minutes before measuring with left arm resting comfortably  
  1. Ensure you are relaxed with back supported to the chair and feet are flat on the floor   
  1. Place the bottom of the  cuff at the crook of  your elbow  
  1. Take two readings a day: 
  • One in the morning before taking any medication  
  • One in the evening before dinner  
  1. The next step is to then read your blood pressure n umbers 


Prevention and Treatment 
You can take effective steps to prevent high blood pressure by: 
  • Losing weight if you need to/maintaining healthy weight  
  • Exercising regularly 
  • Eating a healthy diet 
  • Reducing your consumption of alcohol  
  • Stopping smoking 
  • Cutting down on salt and caffeine  
  • Regularly monitor blood pressure at home and taking prescribed medications  
Medicare Blood Pressure Monitors  
All our 
Medicare Blood Pressure Monitors  offer systolic and diastolic blood pressure measurement as well as heart rate and irregular heartbeat detection. Please click the image below to find out more  information: 



For more information about managing high blood pressure  visit: https://www.mybp.ie/    


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