I like the types with an internal memory so past readings can quickly be reviewed. The memory tells me not only if my patients are in control on the day of the visit, but whether they are checking their blood pressures regularly and what their resting home recordings are.
Try measuring your blood pressure while resting in bed before getting up in the morning. If your blood pressure is high, try measuring it every week or so until your next doctor appointment. Bring your blood pressure monitor and results with you. Early morning blood pressures are important in patients with hypertension and can often signal the need to take your blood pressure medications before going to bed.
Buying a home blood pressure monitor and checking everyone in your family would be a great life-giving gift this holiday season.
Does your family have a home blood pressure monitoring device? Have you tested your blood pressure recently? I will share with you more tips on treating high blood pressure and other common conditions in the weeks to come.
As always, I welcome your comments and questions.
To your health!
Dr. Marie Savard is an ABC News medical contributor. To learn more about Savard's health management system, download free forms and a sample letter to your doctor, visit http://www.drsavard.com and click on "Learn how to take charge of your health."