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Checking Your Blood Pressure at Home

Home blood pressure monitoring can be a good way for you and your doctor to learn how your blood pressure changes during the day. You can use one of two types of blood pressure monitors, and each has pros and cons.

Middle aged woman taking a blood pressure reading at home with a personal blood pressure monitor.
Having your own blood pressure monitor can help you track your blood pressure. Ask you health care provider for a recommendation.

Aneroid monitors

This type of monitor has a cuff that you inflate by hand and a dial gauge with a pointer. Most models are easy to carry and usually inexpensive. Some models have easy-to-read gauges and a special cuff that allows you to work it with one hand. These monitors need to be calibrated at least once a year.

Digital monitors

These monitors are easy to use and read. Most digital monitors are portable and can be used with one hand. Keep in mind that digital monitors are sensitive to body movement and don't work well on certain people. They also need batteries and can be expensive. 

Talk with your doctor about which type might be best for you. No matter what kind of monitor you use, take it with you to your doctor's office, so you can compare it with the monitor in the office and make sure it is accurate. 

Online Medical Reviewer: Foster, Sarah, RN, MPH
Online Medical Reviewer: MMI board-certified, academically affiliated clinician
Last Review Date: 4/16/2014
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