The heart pumps blood through the body, causing arteries to contract and expand. In certain areas of your body, such as your neck and the inside of your wrist, arteries are close to the skin's surface, making it easy to take your pulse. The dorsalis pedis artery, located in your foot, is another artery from which you can get a pulse reading. Taking your pulse in your foot will tell you how many times your heart beats in one minute. It can also indicate circulation problems or blocked arteries in the lower limbs.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
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Sit in a chair or on the floor in a position where you can easily reach your foot with your hand. Lie down on a bed if someone else is taking the pulse in your foot.
Locate the dorsalis pedis artery. Place your index and middle finger on the front of your foot between your big toe and second toe. Slide your fingers downward toward your leg. Concentrate on sensing a pulse in the mid-foot area. You may be able to see the artery emerging from your foot.
Take your pulse. Place your index and middle finger on top of the artery and apply light pressure. Count the beats for 30 seconds. Multiply the number of beats by two to get the number of beats per minute (BPM).
Verify if your results are within normal levels. Keep in mind that illness, injury, exercise and emotions fluctuate your heart rate. A normal resting heart rate for newborns under 30 days old ranges from 70 to 190 BPM, for infants ages 0 to 11 it ranges from 80 to 120 BPM, for children ages 1 to 10 it ranges from 70 to 130 BPM, and a normal resting heart rate for children over the age of 10 and adults ranges from 70 to 100 BPM.
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