What Are The Different Blood Pressure Categories
Blood pressure can be categorized into five different types, namely:
Normal: Blood pressure below 120/80 mm Hg is considered to be normal.
Elevated: When blood pressure readings consistently range from 120 to 129 systolic and less than 80 mm Hg diastolic, it is known as elevated blood pressure. People with elevated blood pressure are at risk of high blood pressure unless steps are taken to control it.
Hypertension stage I: In this condition, blood pressure readings consistently range from 130 to 139 systolic or 80 to 89 mm Hg diastolic. Doctors may prescribe blood pressure medications and some lifestyle changes to reduce the risk of heart diseases and stroke.
Hypertension stage II: In this condition, blood pressure readings consistently range from 140/90 mm Hg or higher. The doctors may prescribe a combination of both medications and lifestyle changes.
Hypertensive crisis: This is the most critical condition and requires emergency medical attention. In this condition, the blood pressure suddenly exceeds 180/120 mm Hg. Contact the physician immediately if the following symptoms are experienced:
- Difficulty speaking
Can High Blood Pressure Be Prevented Or Avoided
If your high blood pressure is caused by lifestyle factors, you can take steps to reduce your risk:
- Lose weight.
- Reduce your alcohol consumption.
- Learn relaxation methods.
If your high blood pressure is caused by disease or the medicine you take, talk to your doctor. He or she may be able to prescribe a different medicine. Additionally, treating any underlying disease can help reduce your high blood pressure.
Read Also: Onion Blood Pressure
The Definition For What Is Considered High Blood Pressure Has Been Tightened Here’s What You Need To Know
If you didn’t have high blood pressure before, there’s a good chance you do now.
In 2017, new guidelines from the American Heart Association, the American College of Cardiology, and nine other health organizations lowered the numbers for the diagnosis of hypertension to 130/80 millimeters of mercury and higher for all adults. The previous guidelines set the threshold at 140/90 mm Hg for people younger than age 65 and 150/80 mm Hg for those ages 65 and older.
This means 70% to 79% of men ages 55 and older are now classified as having hypertension. That includes many men whose blood pressure had previously been considered healthy. Why the change?
Don’t Miss: Does Spicy Food Cause High Blood Pressure
Stress Management And High Blood Pressure
Stress can raise blood pressure even if you are following a healthy DASH diet plan. Many times, the things that cause stress are outside of our control and we feel we cannot change it . What we can change is how we let stress impact us. By learning to be more stress resilient, we can reduce the impacts of stress, such as high blood pressure and weight gain. Stress management techniques such as courses in meditation are a good option. Two types of mediation, transcendental meditation and mindfulness-based stress reduction, have been studied and proven to lower blood pressure as well as increase peace of mind and stress resiliency.
How The Review Was Done
The researchers did a systematic review, searching for studies up until September 2016.
They found 21 randomized controlled trials and 3 cohort studies of different blood pressure targets.
The key features of the studies were:
- people were 60 years of age or older and had hypertension and
- the aim was to lower systolic blood pressure to less than 150 mm Hg or to less than 140 mm Hg.
Also Check: Onions And Blood Pressure
What Is A Sample Dash Diet Sample Menu
A typical 1600 calorie DASH diet menu plan would include the following:
- 2 cups of vegetables
- 2 servings of low-fat/fat-free dairy products
- 6 oz. whole grains
- 5 oz. lean meat, poultry or fish
- 2 teaspoons healthy oils such as olive oil
- 1 oz. nuts and seeds
Rare, mini servings of sweets, salty foods, and alcohol
A typical daily DASH diet sample menu might look like this
- Breakfast: Steel cut oatmeal with chopped pecans, Â½ a chopped apple and cinnamon, black coffee
- Morning snack: other half of apple with 1 tsp peanut butter, large glass of water
- Lunch: spring greens salad with mixed vegetables, grilled chicken breast and vinaigrette dressing on the side. Dip your fork in dressing to get flavor with every bite without saturating the salad with salt and fat. Drink unsweetened iced tea or water.
- Afternoon snack: unsweetened fruity iced tea or carrot sticks with hummus
- Dinner: spiralizer-made zucchini pasta with marinara made with ground turkey and Italian spices, sparkling mineral water
- Dessert: strawberries, 1 tbsp. vanilla yogurt, dusting of cocoa powder
Is It Normal For Blood Pressure To Fluctuate
Some variation in blood pressure throughout the day is normal, especially as a response to small changes in daily life like stress, exercise, or how well you slept the night before. But fluctuations that occur regularly over a number of healthcare provider visits may indicate an underlying problem.
In fact, studies have found that a higher visit-to-visit variation in blood pressure is associated with a higher risk of cardiovascular disease and all-cause mortality.
You May Like: Vodka Blood Pressure
Understanding Blood Pressure What Is It
Your blood pressure reading is a measurement of the pressure your blood applies across your artery walls. Your blood pressure changes a little throughout the day when you relax, your blood pressure lowers, and when you move around or feel stress, your blood pressure increases. But high blood pressure over a long term is associated with serious health risks, including heart, brain, and eye damage. Likewise, chronic low blood pressure sometimes comes with health risks. Fortunately, there are helpful ways to manage both high and low blood pressure.
Appealing Your Va Disability Rating
If you disagree with the VAs disability rating or compensation, you have the right to an appeal. Its recommended that you seek help from a VA disability attorney at the start of this process. We have experience helping veterans navigate the appeals process every day.
If you feel that your rating is too low or you were denied, its important to file an appeal as soon as possible. You only have one year to make this type of appeal. You can also file an appeal if your mental or physical condition has become worse since your last rating.
If you were rated too low or denied benefits and then win your appeal, you may have back-pay due. If this is the case, you will receive a lump-sum payment.
A behind the scenes look at who works for you at Woods and Woods, The Veterans Firm
Read Also: Does Claritin D Raise Blood Pressure
Recommended Reading: Do Onions Lower Blood Pressure
What Causes High Blood Pressure
High blood pressure usually develops over time. It can happen because of unhealthy lifestyle choices, such as not getting enough regular physical activity. Certain health conditions, such as diabetes and having obesity, can also increase the risk for developing high blood pressure. High blood pressure can also happen during pregnancy.
You can manage your blood pressure to lower your risk for serious health problems that may affect your heart, brain, kidneys, and eyes.
What Is The Ideal Blood Pressure
Blood pressure readings are calculated using one number over another: systolic blood pressure over diastolic. The blood pressure monitor shows measurements in millimetres of mercury, appearing as mmHg. Everyones blood pressure will be slightly different and you would need to discuss with a medical professional as to whats safe for you.
The normal blood pressure range for adults comes in between 90/60mmHg and 120/80mmHg. This means that anything below 90/60mmHg mark constitutes low blood pressure , while anything above 140/90mmHg indicates high blood pressure as this is the threshold where a medical professional would actively monitor your blood pressure.
Knowing these numbers can help make you more aware of your health, and may help you to stay on top of your blood pressure
Also Check: Is High Blood Pressure Heart Disease
What Does High Blood Pressure Feel Like
High blood pressure often doesn’t have any symptoms, so you usually don’t feel it.
Hypertension is usually diagnosed by a health care professional during a routine checkup. The average person should get a blood pressure reading at least once a year. As a cardiologist, I think its important for everyone to know their numbers. That means knowing what your blood pressure is. And it also means knowing your blood sugar level, cholesterol and body mass index. When you know your numbers, you can work with your doctor to make a plan to reduce any risks.
Blood pressure is even more important to pay attention to, though, if you have a close relative with hypertension or other risk factors. And know that if your blood pressure is extremely high, you may have unusually severe headaches, chest pain, difficulty breathing or get easily worn out by workouts. If you have any of these symptoms, see your doctor right away.
What Do The Readings Mean
As a general guide:
140/90mmHg or over you may have high blood pressureMost doctors use 140/90mmHg as the cut off for point for diagnosing high blood pressure . This is the point where your risk of serious health problems goes up. They might prescribe medications and advise you to make changes to your lifestyle to bring your blood pressure down. 120/80mmHg up to 140/90mmHg pre-high blood pressureAlso called high-normal blood pressure. This is not high blood pressure, but it is a little higher than it should be and means you could go on to develop high blood pressure. See how you can make healthy changes to your lifestyle to lower it. 90/60mmHg up to 120/80mmHg ideal blood pressureAlso called normal blood pressure. Your blood pressure reading is healthy. At this level you have a much lower risk of heart disease and stroke. Following a healthy lifestyle will help you to keep it in the healthy range. 90/60mmHg or lower you may have low blood pressureLow blood pressure usually isnt a problem, but it can sometimes make you feel faint or dizzy or could be a sign of another health problem.
The video below explains how your blood pressure numbers are linked to the risk of stroke and other disease.
You May Like: Do Onions Lower Blood Pressure
Does Normal Blood Pressure Change With Age
Just as our blood pressure readings change according to our posture, sleep time, and stress levels throughout the day, our blood pressure changes as we age. Despite the fluctuating or changing measurements, we should maintain a normal range. As we age, we can expect changes in our cardiovascular health, including our blood pressure and cholesterol levels. There are several factors that reflect our blood pressure levels over the years, including normal blood pressure for seniors.
Normal Blood Pressure For Children
Normal BP ranges vary in children by age. The University of Iowa Stead Family Childrens Hospital provides this chart:
|Normal Blood Pressure for Children|
|112128 mm Hg||6680 mm Hg|
What is considered healthy for your child also varies by height, age, and sex. You can use Baylor College of Medicine’s calculator to see if your childs blood pressure reading is in a healthy range.
Recommended Reading: Does Spicy Food Cause High Blood Pressure
Heart Attack And Heart Disease
High blood pressure can damage your arteries by making them less elastic, which decreases the flow of blood and oxygen to your heart and leads to heart disease. In addition, decreased blood flow to the heart can cause:
- Chest pain, also called angina.
- Heart attack, which happens when the blood supply to your heart is blocked and heart muscle begins to die without enough oxygen. The longer the blood flow is blocked, the greater the damage to the heart.
- Heart failure, a condition that means your heart cant pump enough blood and oxygen to your other organs.
Preventing High Blood Pressure
To keep your blood pressure in the normal range, your daily habits are key. These things help:
Donât smoke. Among the many health problems that smoking causes, it raises your blood pressure.
Make physical activity a habit. Most experts recommend at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity five or more times a week. Or you could do a harder activity for a shorter period of time per session.
Eat right. Read food labels to see how much sodium is in a serving. Check with your doctor to find out what your daily limit should be. Include a lot of vegetables and fruits, along with whatever else you choose to put on your plate.
Stick to a healthy weight. Extra pounds raise your blood pressure. If youâre not sure what a healthy weight would be for you, ask your doctor.
If you drink alcohol, limit it to no more than one drink a day if youâre a woman and up to two drinks a day if youâre a man.
Recommended Reading: Onion And Blood Pressure
How Blood Pressure Is Measured
Blood pressure testing stations can be found in pharmacies, workplaces, and medical clinics. You can also buy a blood pressure monitor online or at your local pharmacy.
To measure blood pressure, a cuff attached to a monitor is placed on your arm. The cuff is then inflated with an air pump until its pressure stops blood flow from your brachial arterythe major artery found in your upper arm.
As the cuff deflates, the device measures the pressure when blood starts flowing again . Once the cuff is completely deflated, the device gauges the lowest pressure between beats .
Typically, more attention is given to the systolic pressure reading, as systolic blood pressure is a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease in people over the age of 50. Still, both readings are used to make a diagnosis.
Weight Management And High Blood Pressure
Losing weight is difficult for most people, but it ultimately improves more than your just blood pressure. With weight loss, most cardiovascular risk factors improve, your risk for cancers, diabetes, dementia, and many other chronic diseases decreases. Social support is very important to be successful in weight loss. Make a commitment with several friends or join a program that helps keep you accountable and provides support. If you are struggling to lose weight despite eating a DASH diet and being physically active, there might be problems with your metabolism or other underlying factors. Discuss the situation with your health-care professional to see if other conditions may be impacting your metabolism.
Blood Pressure Measurement Errors
First, its important to make sure that your blood pressure really is fluctuating. If youve made the measurements yourself using home monitoring equipment or the machines commonly found in grocery stores and pharmacies, the changes youve seen might actually be related to errors or variations in the measurement process itself.
While home blood pressure monitoring can be an effective and useful tool in some situations, you need proper training to ensure you’re using the correct technique, as performing the measurements without this training might explain the variation you see.
Drugstore machinesthe kind that requires you to sit in a chair and put your arm through a cuffare notorious for being poorly calibrated and fairly inaccurate.
To prevent erroneous reads, it is best to bring your home blood pressure monitor to your next healthcare provider’s appointment to be sure you’re using it correctly, and also bring the home readings to compare them with the readings in your healthcare provider’s office.
Alternatively, some healthcare providers recommend ambulatory blood pressure monitoring in which a device is worn by a person at home. The devices measure the blood pressure over a one- to two-day period every 15 to 20 minutes during the day and every 30 to 60 minutes at night.
This is more costly and not always available, however, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services recently approved national coverage for this non-invasive diagnostic test.
When To Call Your Doctor
A hypertensive crisisdefined as blood pressure above 180/120 mm Hgrequires immediate medical attention. Call 911 if you are also experiencing symptoms such as chest pain, back pain, shortness of breath, difficulty speaking, a change in vision, weakness, or numbness.
You May Like: What Low Blood Pressure Mean
What Is A Normal Blood Pressure Reading
As discussed in Question 4, normal blood pressure is defined as 120/80 mmHg or less. Other important blood pressure ranges to know are: – Prehypertension: 121-139/80-89- Stage 1 hypertension: 140-159/90-99- Stage 2 hypertension: > 160/> 100Exercise, sleep, posture, and stress can all affect blood pressure readings, so if your blood pressure reading is high your doctor may take several readings over time to help confirm a diagnosis.
Whats Your Va Disability Rating For High Blood Pressure
Veterans with high blood pressure may be surprised to find out their disability might be service-connected and be eligible for VA compensation.
Has your health provider diagnosed you with high blood pressure? This is not something to ignore. High blood pressure is often called the silent killer.
Are you a veteran who completed your service in the past year? If so, you may be eligible for a VA disability rating for high blood pressure. This article will explain everything you need to know about this rating.
The rules are different for service members that are less than a year out. Lets explore the details and call us for free if you need help.
Recommended Reading: Is High Blood Pressure Considered Heart Disease