Reasons your blood pressure reading may be off


By pH health care professionals

Have you ever been in a situation where your blood pressure reading sounds way higher than you expected? Something seems off, but after multiple measurements, it seems obvious the numbers aren’t budging. You go fill a prescription and faithfully take meds for a condition you’re still not entirely convinced you have. But hey – the numbers don’t lie, right?


While a trained medical professional typically knows how to take an accurate blood pressure reading, they may be unaware that you need to use the restroom or that you don’t feel totally relaxed. This can lead to numbers that read falsely high even after multiple measurements. 

There are several factors that can cause an inaccurate blood pressure reading, according to the American Medical Association, including:

  1.        If you have a full bladder.
  2.        If your back is unsupported.
  3.        If your feet are unsupported.
  4.        If your legs are crossed.
  5.        If the cuff is over your clothing.
  6.        If your arm is unsupported.
  7.        If you haven’t had at least three minutes of quiet time before the measurement to relax.

So next time you’re at the doctor’s office, take a quick inventory of your body before the reading. Are you relaxed? Do you need to use the restroom? Are your feet, legs and back supported? Is your arm supported with the cuff being on your skin?

If you have any questions about the accuracy of the reading, simply speak up. That’s what the doctors and nurses are there for – to care for your health.

Be proactive, so you can enjoy your healthy life!

The pH professional health care team includes recognized experts from a variety of health care and related disciplines, including physicians, attorneys, nutritionists, nurses and certified fitness instructors. This team also includes the members of the pH Medical Advisory Board, which constantly monitors all pH programs, products and services. To learn more about the pH Medical Advisory Board, click here.


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