If you have high blood pressure, then keeping track of your blood pressure readings is essential! Most people with hypertension take their blood pressure once or twice per day. This gives a daily pulse of your cardiovascular health. But having a record of your readings over weeks or months will give a more full picture of your health. Some people call this a “blood pressure diary.”
Here are the 2 simple methods – and a few tips! – for keeping a record of your blood pressure…
Option #1 – Go digital.
Best if you usually say, “I’d love an app for that, please! “
If you want to go digital with your blood pressure tracking, you have a lot of options! First, you can try an online application, like Heart 360 by the American Heart Association. Web-based apps track and manage your blood pressure and other health information on a secure website. Plus, you can choose to share your daily stats directly with your healthcare provider!
Most of the digital options are apps, which can be used on an iPhone, iPad, or Android phone. Smart phones make it super easy to track and record your blood pressure. These mobile apps, like Smart BP Tracker or Blood Pressure Monitor, can record, track, analyze and share your Blood Pressure information. Some apps, like Blood Pressure Companion, can even sync with data from your Apple Watch. Many apps are free, or available for a few dollars.
At the end of the day, it’s worth it to find one that works for you!
Option #2 – Go analog. (That is, by hand!)
Best if you usually say, “I’ll take good ol’ fashioned paper and pencil, thank you!”
Keeping it simple is the name of the game here! Choose a form that you can printout – or make a simple chart for yourself in a notebook. The key factors to include are the Date and your AM and PM readings. For example, the American Heart Association offers a Blood Pressure Log (pdf) that’s free to download and print. In addition, you may want to record special notes about the day – like unusual eating, extra exercise, or other special events.
Where to keep all this information? You may choose a special notebook for your log, or put your printed log sheets into a certain folder. Make it easy to keep track of! Finally, decide on a spot in your home or work bag where you’ll keep your log. (Best if it’s alongside the tools that you use to take your blood pressure!)
However you do it, keeping a blood pressure diary is one of the key tools to managing your health.
If you have high blood pressure, it’s so important to take care of your body. This means staying informed and making good choices – like knowing what foods reduce blood pressure and how to easily take your blood pressure at home, as well as supplements that support your heart.