White-coat hypertension’ refers to the phenomenon in which a person’s blood pressure is elevated simply due to the fear or anxiety of having it measured in a doctor’s office.
One solution is to get your BP measured every 3 days for two weeks – ask the doctor not to tell you the readings each time but to give you the average reading after the two weeks is up. Explain that it is an exposure practice and that you hope it will also give a more accurate reading.
This way you will feel less anxious so your BP will not rise due to anxiety – also you will habituate (get used to) to getting it taken.
Some people mistakenly believe that having their blood pressure measured is a harmful procedure. All the machine does is tighten against your veins so that the pressure of the blood flow through the vein can be measure. The machine itself cannot cause you ANY harm whatsoever – it doesn’t ‘raise’ your blood pressure – it just measures it. The cuff tightening around your arm is also harmless. Most people find the sensation unpleasant but it only lasts a few seconds.