Blood Pressure Devices
Get lower blood pressure readings by choosing
the best blood pressure device for you

 How to choose the best device   - Types of blood pressure devices

Blood pressure monitor quiz

Physical limitations   -  Accuracy   -   Storage

Security   - Privacy   -   On sale advertising

How to choose the best

Blood pressure monitoring is important.  Owning your own blood pressure
device and measuring blood pressure and keeping accurate up-to-date records
can actually help to lower high blood pressure by reducing the amount of time
you spend worrying about it.

And lowering high blood pressure is what most people want to do.
Any kind of blood pressure machine can give you accurate results if used
correctly.  But attaching and reading your blood pressure information is much
more difficult with some blood pressure instruments.  So be sure to choose a
blood pressure device that is comfortable, easy to attach and easy to read
the blood pressure information that it offers so that you will be more likely
to use it… and use it more often.

Taking blood pressure readings can be easy and fun once you get the hang of
it.  So buy something that is easy, comfortable, and fun to use so that it will
inspire you to take blood pressure readings more often.  Because the more
often you use it, the better understanding you will have of the things that
effect your blood pressure.  And the sooner you can
begin to reduce high blood pressure.

Buying the wrong Blood pressure machine could actually raise your blood
pressure each time before use if you have to struggle with putting it on,
 using it, or getting an accurate blood pressure reading.
The following questions will help you decide
which blood pressure device is best for you.

Types of blood pressure devices


                                 Wrist Blood               Cuff & Stethoscope                Finger Blood
   pressure monitor        Blood pressure monitor           pressure monitor

Do you need a printer to actually print out the blood pressure information?
(To show your doctor or prove to your spouse?)

If you can't write… or remember the readings, there are blood pressure
devices that actually come with a little printer to print the blood pressure
measurement on paper for you.

Get lower blood pressure readings by choosing
the best blood pressure monitor for you… take this quiz to find out.

Ask yourself these questions to find out
which blood pressure monitor may be best for you?


Here are some of the questions you might want to ask yourself before
purchasing any home blood pressure equipment.

Remember, there are many different brands and at least 3 different types of
blood pressure monitors for sale on the market today.  They include the
regular blood pressure cuff, which wraps around your bicep (upper arm)
like your doctor uses… a digital blood pressure monitor such as the
Omron wrist blood pressure monitor, which snaps or Velcro's over your
wrist… or the finger blood pressure meter which only requires you
to point your finger through a small opening to detect your
blood pressure reading.

The following questions will help you to identify which home blood
pressure meter is best for you .  You want to buy a blood pressure kit
that is easy for you to use.  Physical limitations may make it difficult for
some people to use the blood pressure cuff device… while people who
want a most accurate reading may not want to use the finger blood
pressure machine.  Answer the following questions to learn more
about your choices.

What is your reason for owning a home blood
pressure monitor?
Do you have high blood pressure?
Low blood pressure?

Every home blood pressure kit will give you accurate blood pressure readings,
but it is important to note that some are much more sensitive than others.
If you are looking for a device to measure low blood pressure, it is important
to know that the blood pressure cuff device is the most sensitive to
low blood pressure… and the finger blood pressure device the least sensitive
for taking a low blood pressure reading.  If you have low blood pressure,
you may want to consult your physician about this choice.

How old are you?

While age is really not the factor here… there is a good chance that if you
are looking for a home blood pressure monitor, you are older, and therefore
may have limitations in what you can do.
It is best to take an honest look at some of those limitations
before buying a home blood pressure device.

Do you have any physical limitations?

Physical limitations may include many things.
Here are some you may want to think about.

What are your physical limitations?

The object here is to compare taking your own blood pressure with other
activities that take the same kind of knowledge, skill and/or finger dexterity.

Can you:
Set your own watch… clean your own glasses, button your own shirt,
tie your own shoe?  Can you dress yourself?  Can you put on a bra,
underwear, buckle your belt?  Do you have any neck problems?
Can you see your upper arm?  Can you stand and hold a paperback
book under your arm?

If you said "no" to any of these questions, you may not want to
use the blood pressure cuff, as it is much more difficult to place and
control than the new wrist blood pressure monitor or finger blood
pressure monitor that are for sale today.  Do you have another person
who will be installing it on your arm?  If so, the cuff will give you the
most accurate blood pressure reading.

Physical size limitations
How big are you?

Blood pressure cuffs come in different sizes.  What size are you?
There are specific measurements for small medium and large sizes.
You must measure your arm to determine the size of the cuff you need.
Extremely thin persons, with petite arms may even need a child's cuff.

Difficulty for large people vs thin people
to attach the blood pressure cuff.

Can you reach your opposite arm comfortably?
If this is a struggle, the blood pressure cuff may not be the best
choice for you.  Struggling to put the blood pressure cuff on your arm
may raise you blood pressure due to the frustration, and not give you an
accurate normal blood pressure reading even when you do finally
get the blood pressure measurement.

Wrist monitors attach with a plastic or Velcro band and one size fits all.
Finger blood pressure monitors are also one size fits all.

Eyesight- how well do you see at close range?

How difficult will it be to attach the blood pressure device
to your body and then read the blood pressure meter.
Questions you may want to ask yourself.

Can you read your watch or a large print book?
Can you see your arm, wrist and finger?
The blood pressure meter that connects to these devices and actually
gives you your blood pressure information come in different sizes
and shapes.  Make sure the numbers are large enough for you to
read at the distance you must read them.

Also, many types of blood pressure instruments have the blood pressure
meter connected directly to the blood pressure device itself, while others
have a separate meter connected by a small wire or hose.   You may
want to think about these factors if you plan to carry the
blood pressure monitor around with you.

The compact wrist blood pressure monitor may be the best choice
if you're always on the go.  You can wear it like a watch and not
have to worry about any dangling wires or loose hoses.

Dexterity – how is your finger dexterity?

Compare the ease of attaching a blood pressure device to your body.
The blood pressure cuff is the most difficult to install…
but will give the most accurate results if installed correctly.

The wrist blood pressure monitor balances accuracy with ease of use…
and the finger blood pressure monitor may be the least accurate
(in comparison to other types)


Keep in mind that it is not the exact number you get as a blood
pressure  measurement that is always most important.  It is the range
of blood pressure readings you get each day and how they compare
to your normal blood pressure reading that is most important.
So it is good to know your blood pressure
normal reading to make immediate comparisons.

It is also not important that your blood pressure gauge give the exact
same blood pressure readings as every other blood pressure device.
Your monitor may differ from other monitors by a few pounds...
and this does not really matter.  This is like weighing yourself on your
bathroom scale... and then going to your doctor.  It may not give you the
exact same number (weight) as the scale at your doctors office.

So matching the numbers is not what is most important.
It is more important to show "fluctuations" in your weight loss or gain.
The difference in one or two pounds when using different scales
is really not as relevant as whether you are losing or gaining the weight.

Similarly, it is more important just to learn about the "fluctuations" in
your blood pressure readings and how much they differ from your
normal blood pressure reading, than it is to expect the same exact
blood pressure reading from two different blood pressure instruments.

My suggestion is for you to take your new blood pressure device with you
the next time you see your doctor, and have him calibrate the variations
by comparing it with his own blood pressure device, and keep a personal
blood pressure chart for them to see your "fluctuations".

Blood pressure monitoring can save your life.


Consider the case that the blood pressure device comes in.
Most blood pressure devices are packed in a small soft case, while others
have a hard case.  Consider these differences as far as where and how
you will carry it with you, and what kind of protection it will need.
If you don't like the case, but do like the device…
don't let that make your decision for you.  You may just want to consider
buying a better case for it (as you would do to carry good glasses).
I suggest something such as a small padded camera case from your local
variety store.  In it you could carry the blood pressure monitor, pen and a
small notebook and some of your blood pressure
medications for emergencies.


Since blood pressure instruments are fairly expensive and small, it is also
a good idea to write down the serial number and permanently mark
your blood pressure device with your name and phone number in case it is
mixed up with others of the same type or brand… and to identify it if it is
ever lost or stolen.  A black magic marker will usually do the job.


The wrist and finger blood pressure devices offer more privacy of use
than the cuff type.  These will also allow you to help others by easily
allowing them to share your new tool by allowing them to easily do their
own blood pressure privately.  They also seem to be a little less
problematic and easier to use.

Quality vs on sale advertising

Buy a quality tool not a toy  Your life may depend on it.
A discount blood pressure monitor is better than no blood pressure
monitor at all.  But consider its importance to your overall health
and peace of mind if you own a quality blood pressure monitor.

Your pharmacist can be of great value in helping you determine
the best blood pressure monitor for you.  Don't be afraid to
ask for assistance.

Guarantees on these devices run from 1 year – 5 years
Be sure to look for this information before making your purchase.

Does the device have an AC jack or does it only run on batteries?
AC adapters are about $35.00 for those devices that can use them.
Can you manually pump up the blood pressure cuff or is it
only done automatically.

Buying your new blood pressure tester at the local drug store
will most likely include instructions and personal assistance,
including installing the batteries and checking to see that the device
will fit on your arm... right in the store.
Ask the pharmacist.

Good luck on your new purchase.

If you learn anything while shopping that you think may
be helpful to others, please drop me a line at

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* Disclaimer

The information contained on these pages is for general reference purposes only.
It is not a substitute for professional medical advice.  You should always seek the advice of your
physician before starting any new treatment.

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