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Normal Blood Pressure - Range, Influencing Factors and Abnormalities

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The pressure of the blood flowing through the body's arteries while pumping is called blood pressure. This article is a brief overview of blood pressure.

Medically reviewed by

Dr. Sapkal Ganeshrao Patilba

Published At November 9, 2022
Reviewed AtNovember 11, 2022

Introduction

Blood pressure is a reading of the pressure exerted by the continuous pumping of the heart. The heart pumps blood and gushes blood within the arteries of the body. It is extremely important to be aware of one's blood pressure because alterations in blood pressure may lead to several cardiovascular conditions. The question arises, how to find out one's blood pressure? The answer is simple and standard via a blood pressure test.

A sphygmomanometer is a clinical device that aids in reading and providing accurate blood pressure. After this, an individual is acknowledged for their blood pressure range. High blood pressure and low blood pressure are the two medical conditions of the cardiovascular system that indicate an abnormality either with the blood vessels of the heart or other bodily systems. Thus, understanding blood pressure and its ranges is a key factor in maintaining blood pressure.

What Are the Factors That Influence Normal Blood Pressure?

Hypertension, or high blood pressure, and hypotension, or low blood pressure, are the two types of conditions that get influenced by several factors. Both conditions show clinical manifestations of fainting, dizziness, and shortness of breath. Numerous factors influence normal blood pressure.

A few of them are mentioned below.

  • Age

  • Fitness level.

  • Physical activeness.

  • Smoking.

  • Presence of cardiovascular disease.

  • High cholesterol.

  • Diabetes mellitus.

  • Air temperature.

  • Standing up.

  • Lying down.

  • Emotions.

  • Body size.

  • Medications.

What Is High Blood Pressure?

High blood pressure is a cardiovascular condition where the heart and the blood vessels exert more force to function efficiently. This condition must be corrected and reversed. Else it may lead to permanent damage to the heart. Lowering blood pressure can be done with several high blood pressure medications. The healthcare provider may combine two kinds of high blood pressure medications for a more direct and immediate change. Living a healthy and active lifestyle may be an added advantage in decreasing high blood pressure.

What is Low Blood Pressure?

Low blood pressure with no clinical signs or symptoms is generally not very serious. Nevertheless, health issues may develop if the blood pressure drops, depriving the brain of an adequate blood supply. This will eventually lead to dizziness as well as difficulty in breathing. A sudden decrease in one's blood pressure most commonly occurs while standing up abruptly. This type of abnormality in blood pressure is called postural hypotension. Another kind of decrease in blood pressure can result from standing for a long time, called neurally mediated hypotension.

What Causes High Blood Pressure?

An increase in blood pressure can result from a range of activities as well as physiological disturbances. There are no set rules of causes that lead to elevated blood pressure.

Below are a few possible reasons that may result in high blood pressure.

  • Aging.

  • Stress.

  • Obesity.

  • Drinking coffee.

  • Smoking.

  • Pregnancy.

  • Standing up all of a sudden.

  • Intense physical activity.

  • Drinking alcohol.

  • Living in a tropical country.

  • Certain medications.

  • Drugs.

  • Anxiety.

  • Issues with the heart's conduction system.

  • Fear.

  • Anemia.

  • Infection.

  • Elevated thyroid hormone.

  • Dehydration.

  • Stress.

  • Fever.

What Causes Low Blood Pressure?

Hypotension is the condition when an individual suffers from low blood pressure. Several reasons may lead to this condition.

Mentioned below are some of the causes of low blood pressure.

  • Heart tissue damage.

  • Age.

  • Heart attack.

  • Congenital heart defect.

  • Inflammation of heart tissue.

  • Heart surgery complications.

  • An underactive thyroid gland.

  • Imbalance of chemicals in the blood.

  • Imbalance of calcium levels.

  • Imbalance of potassium levels.

  • Obstructive sleep apnea.

  • Rheumatic fever.

  • Lupus

  • Sedatives.

  • Opioids.

  • Antiarrhythmic drugs.

  • Psychiatric medications.

  • Beta-blockers.

What Are the Blood Pressure Categories Recognized by the American Heart Association?

The several ranges of blood pressure recognized by the AHA, also referred to as the American Heart Association, are as follows.

  • Normal- Blood pressure of less than 120/80 mm Hg is within the normal range. Healthy habits for the heart, such as a balanced diet and regular exercise, must be maintained.

  • Elevated- Elevated blood pressure ranges from 120-129/ 80 mm Hg. Individuals with elevated ranges of blood pressure are more prone to develop high blood pressure. This can be easily avoided by taking crucial steps towards a healthy heart.

  • Stage 1 hypertension is when the blood pressure always falls under 130-139/80-89 mm Hg. The health care professional will prescribe medications along with lifestyle changes based on the risk of developing a cardiovascular condition or atherosclerosis.

  • Stage 2 hypertension is when blood pressure always falls under 140/90 mm Hg or more. A combination of antihypertensives with regular fitness activity becomes mandatory.

  • A hypertensive crisis is a high blood pressure stage requiring immediate medical attention to avoid life-threatening conditions.

Which Number of the Blood Pressure Is More Vital?

Systolic and diastolic blood pressure are the two readings of blood pressure. The upper limit is called systolic, and the lower limit is called diastolic. Both limits are important, and it is necessary to maintain them within optimum levels. But closer attention is usually given to the upper limit or the systolic blood pressure because systolic blood pressure increases stealthily with age due to the stiffness of large blood vessels and long-standing buildup of fat plaque leading to a higher risk of cardiovascular diseases. In addition, the risk of ischemic heart disease or heart attack increases with a higher range of systolic readings in blood pressure.

Conclusion

Blood pressure is the amount of pressure exerted by the cardiovascular system to pump blood efficiently throughout the body. A blood pressure reading is presented with two numbers. The upper or the higher of the two measures the systolic pressure, which is the pressure in the arteries while the heart beats and fills with blood. The second digit presents the diastolic pressure, which is the pressure buildup within the arteries while the heart rests between two beats. The standard measure of blood pressure is equal to 120/80 mm Hg. Being aware of blood pressure is important to keep cardiovascular diseases at bay. The reasons for developing abnormality in blood pressure and their occurrence depend on underlying medical conditions and other disturbances. Both conditions need to be diagnosed and treated. Treatment depends on the severity and onset of the disease. Living an active lifestyle and avoiding foods rich in cholesterol will aid in maintaining an individual's blood pressure and cardiovascular health.

Frequently Asked Questions

1.

Is 140/70 Normal Blood Pressure?

 
A normal blood pressure reading is 120/80 mmHg and lesser. A healthy young woman's normal blood pressure is lower than 120 mmHg systolic and 80 mmHg diastolic and can range from 90/60 mmHg to 120/80 mmHg. High blood pressure is a blood pressure of 140/90 mmHg or higher. When systolic and diastolic blood pressures differ in categories, the greater category is used to classify blood pressure levels.

2.

What Should I Do if I Have a Blood Pressure of 140/90 or Higher?

 
High blood pressure typically develops gradually. It can result from unhealthy lifestyle choices, such as a lack of regular physical activity.   If you monitor blood pressure at home and notice levels that are consistently higher than 140/90, or if you experience symptoms such as severe headaches or vision changes, contact the doctor immediately and go to the emergency room.

3.

What Is Considered Stroke-Level Blood Pressure?

Blood pressure levels of 180/120 mmHg or higher are considered stroke-level, dangerously high, and necessitate immediate medical attention. If your blood pressure is 180/120 mm Hg or higher and you experience shortness of breath, chest pain, or stroke symptoms, call 911 or emergency medical services. Numbness or tingling, difficulty speaking, or vision changes are all symptoms of a stroke.

4.

What Are the Symptoms of Low Blood Pressure?

Symptoms of low blood pressure (hypotension) include:
- Blurred or fading vision.
- Dizziness or lightheadedness.
- Fainting.
- Fatigue.
- Trouble concentrating.
- Nausea.

5.

How to Quickly Lower Blood Pressure?

- Bathe or shower in warm water. Enjoy the warm water in the shower or bath for at least 15 minutes. This can also aid in the reduction of muscle tension.
- Perform a breathing exercise. Take a deep breath from the core, hold it for two seconds, and then slowly exhale. Pause for a few moments before repeating
- Relax! Stress is a major cause of high blood pressure, so do everything you can to relax. This could be as simple as sitting in a quiet room for a few moments, stretching, reading a good book, or meditating.

6.

Does Coffee Cause High Blood Pressure?

 
According to the food and drug administration, 400 milligrams of caffeine per day is generally safe for most people. However, more than four cups of coffee daily may raise your blood pressure. Consider cutting back if you enjoy coffee, tea, or other caffeine-rich beverages such as cola and some energy drinks.

7.

Can We Self-Diagnose High Blood Pressure?

 
Unfortunately, high blood pressure can occur without any noticeable symptoms. High blood pressure symptoms include shortness of breath, moderate or severe headaches, anxiety,  nosebleeds, palpitations,  anxiety, or a feeling of pulsations in the neck.

8.

What Happens if the BP Falls Below 60?

 
In the elderly, a diastolic blood pressure of 90 to 60 mm Hg is considered normal. However, people become uneasy when it falls below 60 mm Hg. Many older adults with low diastolic pressures become tired or dizzy and frequently fall. This is not good news for the elderly, who may suffer from brittle bones and other problems.

9.

Can Drinking Water Help Lower Blood Pressure?

Chronic dehydration can also cause high blood pressure by causing the body to retain sodium. Even something as simple as drinking six to eight glasses of water per day can help lower blood pressure. Because water constitutes 73 % of the human heart, no other liquid is more effective at regulating blood pressure.

10.

What Is the Name Given to the Pressure Exerted by a Beating Heart?

Every time the heart beats, blood is pumped into the arteries. When the heart beats and pumps blood, the blood pressure is at its highest. This is referred to as systolic pressure. The blood pressure drops when the heart is at rest, between beats. The systolic pressure is the higher number caused by the contraction of the heart. In contrast, diastolic pressure is the lower pressure in the arteries during the brief "resting" period between heartbeats.
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Dr. Sapkal Ganeshrao Patilba
Dr. Sapkal Ganeshrao Patilba

Cardiology

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