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Blood Pressure Monitors: Answering 28 Frequently Asked Questions

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A blood pressure monitor for home use is a quick and clever way to monitor your health, as well as that of your loved ones’.

However, with so many options available in the market today, which blood pressure monitor is the best to buy?

And when you’re using it, what are some tips to get a more accurate reading so that you get reliable results that your healthcare provider can take useful insights from?

There are many key questions that you may have about a blood pressure monitor. Let’s attempt to answer them in this guide to the most frequently asked questions we face!

Contents

Which Brand of Blood Pressure Monitor Is the Best in 2022?

There are a few established blood pressure monitor brands, including:

  • Omron
  • Rossmax
  • OSIM
  • Beurer

Omron is arguably one of the most popular and highly raved blood pressure monitors in Singapore.

omron hem 7121 blood pressure monitor
Omron HEM 7121 Blood Pressure Monitor

With more than 40 years of experience providing reliability and accuracy, Omron is the leading brand that doctors and pharmacists recommend. It is also the proud top seller of Omron home blood pressure monitors at 200 million units sold worldwide.

Omron’s upper arm blood pressure monitors, like the HEM 7120, 7121, 7361T, 7130L, JPN500, 6161, and 7600T are recognised and certified as some of the most precise monitors available to consumers.

Which Omron BP Monitor Model Is the Best?

Can’t decide on the Omron blood pressure monitor model to buy?

At first glance, it seems like most features of the different models are similar, but there are some differences between them.

Here’s a quick overview to understand each monitor better and to make a better and more informed purchasing decision:

overview chart on the different omron blood pressure monitors
Comparing the Different Omron Blood Pressure Monitors

Which Home Blood Pressure Monitor Do Doctors Recommend?

female doctor in a hospital
Doctors and Pharmacists Recommend Omron Blood Pressure Monitors

As we have mentioned above, Omron is the top brand recommended and used by doctors and pharmacists all over the world.

This statistic makes Omron a reliable choice for consumers to benefit from the preferred technology used by medical experts.

How Long Does a Blood Pressure Monitor Last?

Given that it is extremely important that a blood pressure monitor has to be accurate, it is recommended to replace yours when it is no longer accurate after a long period of use.

calendar note book
A Blood Pressure Monitor Lasts for a Few Years

How long your blood pressure monitor lasts may not be the same as others, but generally, most blood pressure monitors last a few years, and up to a decade for some.

It is also key to recalibrate and service your device every 2-3 years so that you can get precise readings.

Do I Need to Calibrate My Blood Pressure Machine and When?

Yes, it is highly recommended to recalibrate your blood pressure monitor on a regular basis.

When you should do it depends on its use. If you use your Omron blood pressure monitor at home or in a personal setting, it is advised to calibrate it every 2 years.

If it is used in a clinical environment, for example, a doctor using it in his clinic, you should calibrate it every year to make sure that results are accurate.

How to Calibrate My Omron Blood Pressure Monitor

Need to calibrate your Omron blood pressure monitor?

Simply send in a request via their contact form on the Omron website and they will get in touch with you to arrange the details.

How to Reset My Omron Blood Pressure Monitor

To reset your Omron blood pressure monitor to the default settings, simply press and hold the SET button in the setting mode.

Next, press the START/STOP button for over 2 seconds.

Make sure you go through other key information in the user manual before attempting to reset it.

Is the Systolic or Diastolic Reading More Important?

A complete blood pressure reading involves both the systolic and diastolic figures.

Between the 2, is there 1 that is more important than the other?

According to Harvard Health, research has shown that both numbers are equally important when it comes to tracking heart health. However, most research reveals that there is a higher risk of stroke and heart disease linked to higher systolic blood pressure instead of diastolic pressure.

This is particularly so for the elderly aged 50 and above, which explains why medical professionals monitor the top number more closely.

What Does It Mean When the Systolic Reading Is High and the Diastolic Reading Is Low?

If your systolic reading is higher and your diastolic reading is in the normal range that is lower than the systolic reading, it means that you either have a condition called isolated systolic hypertension or simply regular hypertension.

Systolic hypertension is the most common type of high blood pressure in older people.

Why Would Systolic Blood Pressure Be High?

A high systolic reading can have many causes.

As we grow older, our arteries stiffen, which contributes to high blood pressure. Our inherited genes and some existing health conditions like obesity can also promote high blood pressure.

Can Blood Pressure Monitors Give False Readings?

The accuracy of blood pressure monitors is one of the most frequently asked questions among users.

Rest assured that Omron monitors are clinically validated to ensure accuracy. You should also keep in mind the different ways to improve your reading accuracy to avoid false or inaccurate readings.

What Are the Factors That Can Inflate Blood Pressure Monitor Readings?

Sometimes, your blood pressure monitor may not be showing an accurate reading, but one that is higher than it actually is.

3 glasses of cocktails
Alcohol Inflates Your Blood Pressure Readings

There are a few factors that can affect your readings and cause an inflated result:

  • Stress
  • Anxiety
  • Fasting
  • Overeating
  • Having alcohol, caffeine, or smoking
  • Talking too much
  • Being cold
  • Having a full bladder
  • Crossing your legs
  • Wrong arm cuff placement

Why Does a Full Bladder Affect Blood Pressure?

When your bladder is full, it pressures your kidneys and causes high blood pressure.

Additionally, having high blood pressure can signify that your bladder is not emptying properly even if there are no clear signs.

Can Low Batteries Affect My Blood Pressure Monitor?

Yes, they can.

If your cuff is not inflating, the cause may be low battery power. This is because the monitor needs a certain amount of power to automatically inflate your cuff.

It can affect the speed of your cuff inflating, and if it takes too long, it could lead to an error code. Some monitors may also be less accurate if the batteries are low.

When Should I Change the Batteries of My Blood Pressure Monitor?

There is no exact time of which to change your batteries, but Omron blood pressure monitors typically come with a low battery indicator that can tell you when the battery is running low.

When the indicator flashes, it signals a good time to change the battery.

How Can You Tell If Your Blood Pressure Monitor Is Accurate?

One easy way to know if your blood pressure monitor is accurate or not is knowing whether it is clinically validated.

This refers to whether your blood pressure monitor is verified to be accurate.

Omron’s blood pressure monitors are clinically validated to be within these measurements:

  • Blood pressure: within +/- 3 mgHg or 2 percent
  • Pulse: within +/- 5 percent of reading

They achieve or exceed the standards set out by the Association of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI).

Does Drinking More Water Help Lower Blood Pressure?

young woman drinking from a bottle by the sea
Drinking Enough Water Helps to Reduce Blood Pressure

It is possible to improve your high blood pressure through better lifestyle choices, including drinking 8 glasses of water a day and staying sufficiently hydrated.

You can even add minerals like potassium and magnesium to your water to reduce high blood pressure.

Is It OK to Take My Blood Pressure Multiple Times?

Yes, it is entirely acceptable to take your blood pressure a few times a day.

In fact, it is recommended to take your blood pressure at least twice daily and 2-3 times each time you take it. This helps to ensure that the measurements are accurate since your blood pressure fluctuates throughout the day.

When you take it also matters, too!

When Is the Best Time to Take Your Blood Pressure?

The most ideal time to take your blood pressure in a day depends on yourself.

Choose the time period where you are the calmest and take your readings at the same time daily. However, it is advised to do so within 1 hour of waking up in the morning and before you go to sleep at night.

messy bed in the morning
Take Your Blood Pressure in the Morning and Evening

Does Arm Position Affect Blood Pressure?

The way you position your arm does have an effect on your blood pressure readings.

For example, if you position your upper arm above your heart level, you are likely to get lower measurements, and if you place it below your heart level, you are likely to get higher measurements.

The ideal position is having the arm cuff placed on your arm at the same level as your heart.

guide to measuring blood pressure correctly
How to Measure Your Blood Pressure Correctly

Should Your Arm Be Straight When Taking Blood Pressure?

Yes, your arm should not be in an awkward position when you are taking your blood pressure.

Follow the same angle as the illustration in the model above.

Should I Use My Right or Left Arm When Using My Blood Pressure Monitor?

If you’re right-handed, it’s advised to take your blood pressure from your left arm.

However, if your doctor advises otherwise, you can also use your other arm to take your blood pressure.

There is usually a difference in reading between the left and right arm, but doctors tend to take the higher reading. While small discrepancies may be normal, a large difference may signal artery-clogging plaque in the blood vessel that supplies blood to your arm with a higher reading.

How Tight Should the Blood Pressure Cuff Be?

You should fix the cuff to the extent that you can only push 2 fingertips under the top edge.

Ensure that your skin isn’t pinched when you inflate the cuff.

Which Side Should You Sleep On If You Have High Blood Pressure?

young woman sleeping with an eye mask
Which Side Should You Sleep on If You Have Hypertension?

If you suffer from hypertension, some experts recommended sleeping on your left side.

This is because it relieves pressure on the blood vessels that return blood to your heart.

However, there is also research that suggests sleeping on your left side can raise pressure on your heart. A 2018 study revealed that those sleeping on their left side experienced ECG changes because the position causes the heart to shift and turn.

More evidence is required to determine which position is better than the other. However, getting sufficient and good-quality sleep remains important to your health!

Which Model of Omron Blood Pressure Monitor Is the Best?

There is no specific model that is the best for you, but rather, you should choose yours based on your needs and budget.

You can find out more information to make a more informed decision in this article on choosing the best blood pressure monitor.

What Are the Common Omron Error Codes?

Understanding the Different Omron Error Codes

What Does the Error E5 Code on My Blood Pressure Monitor Mean and How Do I Fix It?

According to the table above, the error code E5 refers to clothing affecting your measurement.

It is one of the most frequently seen mistakes and all it takes is making sure that there is no clothing between your bare skin and the cuff, Thereafter, you need to retake your blood pressure again.

Where Do I Submit My Warranty Registration for My Omron Blood Pressure Monitor in Singapore?

Registering the warranty for your Omron blood pressure monitor is a quick and simple process.

Visit the Omron warranty page on its site and key in the details to get your 5-year warranty coverage on the monitor!

Where Can I Buy My Omron Blood Pressure Monitor in Singapore?

Omron blood pressure monitors are available at local pharmacies like Watsons, Guardian, and Unity.

They are not found in supermarkets, including Giant, NTUC FairPrice, Cold Storage, or other smaller specialty grocers.

Alternatively, you can buy your Omron blood pressure monitor online at SeniorCare, your reliable elderly care e-shop!

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