High blood pressure is an epidemic health problem the world over. The statistics for the year 2007 included an approximate count of 1 billion people the world over who suffer from this condition. Of the 1 billion, the US is home to 73.6 million of these people. Like heart disease, high blood pressure is sometimes known as the `silent killer`. An even more dangerous issue is that many do not even know they have it, as there are often no visible symptoms until it is too late. It can also lead to heart or failure and stroke if allowed to get out of control. It can also lead to other conditions that are not generally public knowledge; these are kidney failure, dementia and blindness.
People generally discover that they have high blood pressure at a standard doctor's visit as this is routine at the beginning of a visit. Many people do not visit their doctor regularly, and having a home kit can make it possible to become aware of hypertension in a safe amount of time to start treating it. Sometimes people's pressure and heart rate are elevated when the reading is done at the doctor's office, which would result in distorted results. This can be alleviated by using a home blood pressure kit.
There are some things to keep in mind when looking for a good blood pressure kit. A nice option is a heart monitor that is linked to remote monitoring equipment, if it is affordable to the patient. The doctor may advise other features that are desirable.
Arm cuff monitors are the old standard, but this is awkward and bulky to use when a person is checking their own blood pressure alone. There needs to be a hand to pump the bulb, while at the same time monitoring the rate of blood flow and pulse with the other. Therefore, this form of monitor is geared to use by doctors and nurses. Finger and wrist devices have been shown to give inaccurate readings due to body temperature or position changes.
Now there are electronic blood pressure monitors that can be purchased in a home kit. This includes a sensor that rates the blood flow as the pump is working; easy to read digital readings let the user instantly see their readings. These come both with electronic hands-free pumps or manual pumps.
There are some required features that should be checked for when purchasing a blood pressure kit. Make sure that the numbers on the readout are easy to see and that they will be viewable based on personal sight requirements. The cuff should be checked to see if it is a good fit on the arm - without this, the reading will be unreliable. The stethoscope should allow hearing of the heartbeat. A good idea is to bring the kit to the doctor shortly after purchasing so that he/she can check to see that all features and functions are working correctly. Another tip is to use the bathroom before checking pressure, and trying to become very relaxed before and during is very important.
A home blood pressure kit should definitely be a staple in the home of someone who suffers from hypertension. It should also be a serious consideration in the first aid kit supplies of anyone. As this condition can be a silent killer, checking the blood pressure regularly will alert the user to a problem that otherwise might go dangerously unnoticed. When the blood pressure is not monitored on a regular basis, it could result in a fatal error for the sufferer.
|Roberto Sedycias works as IT consultant for Polomercantil
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