April 05, 2022
Pulse checks way to keep heart healthy
The Heart Foundation is urging people to learn how to check their pulse.
Medical director Gerry Devlin says the self-test is a good way to pick warning signs of common conditions such as atrial fibrillation or AF, which causes an irregular and often a rapid heart rate and can lead to stroke and heart failure.
He says it affects about one in 35 New Zealanders between 35 and 74, with Māori likely to be more affected and both Māori and Pasifika people tending to develop atrial fibrillation 10 years younger than non-Māori and non-Pasifika.
The check can be done by placing three fingers over the inside of your wrist and resting the fingers at the base of your thumb.
Take time to feel the pulse under your fingers and count each beat for 30 seconds – then double the count to get your heart rate per minute.
A normal heartbeat is between 60 and 100 beats per minute when resting.