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How To Get Blood Pressure Up When Too Low

Symptoms And Causes Of Low Blood Pressure

What To Do If Blood Pressure Is Too Low

Many different conditions and situations can cause low blood pressure, from standing up too fast to being pregnant. Sometimes, low blood pressure is linked to an underlying problem. Thats why its important to see your doctor right away if you experience the signs of low blood pressure.

Symptoms of low blood pressure can include:

  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Depression

Low blood pressure can be a sign of serious heart, endocrine or neurological conditions. If left untreated, the brain and other vital organs do not get the oxygen and nutrients they need. In extreme cases, this can cause shock, a life-threatening condition.

If you show signs of low blood pressure, your doctor will conduct an exam and may perform tests to determine whats causing the condition. Low blood pressure can occur with many other conditions.

Some causes of low blood pressure are:

What Is Blood Pressure

As blood pumps through the circulatory system, it pushes against the walls of the arteries and veins. Blood pressure is the force of the blood as it presses against the blood vessel walls. It is measured in systolic pressure and diastolic pressure .

Blood pressure rises and falls throughout the day. Normal blood pressure is considered to be below 120/80 mm Hg. In a blood pressure reading, the top number refers to systolic pressure, and the bottom number refers to the diastolic pressure.

When Should You Call Your Doctor About Low Blood Pressure

If you have recurring dizziness or fainting, or other symptoms of low blood pressure, you should visit your doctor. Sudden drops in blood pressure can be dangerous. It is important for your doctor to determine why your blood pressure is dropping and treat the cause.

Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 10/08/2019.

References

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Boost Your B12 Intake

Vitamin B12 performs a critical role in helping the body produce healthy red blood cells. Lack of this important vitamin can result in anemia, which lowers blood pressure and can result in excessive bleeding as well as organ and nerve damage. Foods that are rich in vitamin B12 include eggs, chicken, fish like salmon and tuna, and low-fat dairy products.

Serious Injuries And Shock

How (And Why) to Lower Your Blood Pressure Naturally

Low blood pressure can also be caused by serious injuries or burns, particularly if you have lost a lot of blood. This can mean that there is less blood being pumped around your body. Low blood pressure can also occur if you go into shock after having a serious injury.

Other kinds of shock are described below.

Anaphylactic shock

Anaphylactic shock, or anaphylaxis, is caused by an allergic reaction to something – for example, a wasp sting or a peanut. During an allergic reaction, your body produces a large amount of a chemical called histamine, which causes your blood vessels to widen and leads to a sudden, severe drop in blood pressure.

Cardiogenic shock

Cardiogenic shock occurs when your heart cannot supply enough blood to your body, so your blood pressure drops. This can happen during a heart attack.

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How Is High Blood Pressure Treated

Treatment for hypertension depends on how high your blood pressure is, as well as your lifestyle and risk factors.

For elevated blood pressure, the goal is to keep your blood pressure from developing into clinical hypertension. No medications are necessary at this stage. Your doctor may recommend:

For stage 1 hypertension, your doctor may recommend lifestyle changes as mentioned above, as well as:

  • reducing your sodium intake
  • finding healthy ways to manage your stress
  • medication, if your blood pressure doesnt improve after 1 month of lifestyle changes

For stage 2 hypertension, the typical treatment, in addition to a healthier lifestyle, is medication. Your doctor may prescribe one or more of the following medications to help lower your blood pressure:

A hypertensive crisis requires immediate treatment. Medications may be given orally or intravenously .

The most for a hypertensive crisis include:

Eat Smaller And More Frequent Meals

A sudden drop in blood pressure after eating larger, heavier meals is known as postprandial hypotension, common in older adults. After a large meal, blood indeed rushes to the intestine to help in proper digestion. As a result of this additional blood demand of the intestine, blood flow to other parts of the body will decrease and cause a drastic drop in blood pressure.

Eating small healthy meals frequently throughout the day may help prevent triggering postprandial hypotension. Also, consider reducing your carbohydrate intake because high-carbohydrate meals are thought to influence the BP decrease.

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Low Blood Pressure When You Stand Up

Sometimes, changes in your posture can cause your blood pressure to drop, for example, going from sitting or lying down to standing up. You might feel the symptoms listed above when you stand up, such as feeling dizzy or faint. They will pass quickly as your body adjusts, but can put you at risk of falls.

This is called postural hypotension or orthostatic hypotension. Its caused by changes to your arteries which happen as you get older and if youre taking medications to lower your blood pressure.

The animation below provides information on the causes, symptoms and potential interventions related to orthostatic hypotension.

This film was produced by Newcastle University for work completed by Dr James Frith, supported by the NIHR Newcastle Biomedical Research Centre.

Cut Back On Sugar And Refined Carbohydrates

5 Easy Ways To Increase Low Blood Pressure (Hypotension)

Many studies show that restricting sugar and refined carbohydrates can help you lose weight and lower your blood pressure.

Sugar, especially fructose, may increase your blood pressure more than salt, according to one 2014 review. In trials lasting at least 8 weeks, sugar increased blood pressure by 5.6 mm Hg diastolic and 6.9 mm Hg systolic .

A 2020 study that compared various popular diets found that for people who with more weight or obesity, low carb and low fat diets lowered their diastolic blood pressure by an average of about 5 mm Hg and their systolic blood pressure 3 mm Hg after 6 months .

Another benefit of a low carb, low sugar diet is that you feel fuller longer, because youre consuming more protein and fat.

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Recent Findings Raise Concerns About Lowering Diastolic Blood Pressure The Second Number In Your Blood Pressure Reading Too Far

More of us than ever before are taking medications to lower our blood pressure. Longstanding guidelines suggest that most people should aim for a systolic blood pressure no higher than 140 millimeters of mercury . But in 2015, the results of the Systolic Blood Pressure Intervention Trial suggested that reaching a target of 120 mm Hg could further reduce the risks associated with high blood pressure, including heart attack, stroke, heart failure, and death.

Yet reaching that lower target often requires three blood pressure medications, which can increase the likelihood of side effects. Two observational studies and one clinical trial have raised concerns about lowering blood pressure particularly diastolic pressure too far. Diastolic blood pressure represents the pressure between beats when the heart relaxes. “When your systolic blood pressure gets too low, it can manifest as lightheadedness, fainting, and weakness. But low diastolic pressure by itself doesn’t have any symptoms,” says Dr. Paul Conlin, professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and chief of medicine at the VA Boston Healthcare System.

Risk Of Injury From Falls

If your blood pressure is low enough, the drop can cause symptoms such as fainting or dizziness.This causes a significant risk of falling since youre not conscious to stop the fall. Additionally, youre not aware of how badly youve injured yourself during a fainting spell. This can lead to serious injuries, such as head trauma from hitting your head.

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Causes Of Diastolic Hypotension By Itself

There are three known causes of isolated diastolic hypotension:

Medications

  • Alpha-blocker medications. These blood pressure medications work by causing your blood vessels to open up . Because they lower diastolic pressure more than systolic pressure, they may cause isolated diastolic hypotension. Common brand names include Minipress and Cardura.

Lifestyle

  • Aging. As we age, we lose the elasticity of our arteries. For some older adults, arteries may become too stiff to spring back between heartbeats, causing diastolic blood pressure to be low.
  • Too much salt in your diet. Dietary salt can decrease elasticity of your blood vessels. If you take in too much salt, you may increase your risk of low diastolic blood pressure.

How To Check Your Blood Pressure

What is a Dangerously Low Blood Pressure?  Disinfected

You can check your blood pressure:

  • at home yourself using a home blood pressure monitor – talk to your GP about home monitors

Low blood pressure is a measurement of 90/60mmHg or lower.

The first number is the highest pressure when your heart beats and pumps blood around your body. The second number is the lowest pressure when your heart relaxes between beats.

See a GP if you have low blood pressure and keep getting symptoms such as dizziness.

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What Are The Side Effects Of The Treatment For Low Blood Pressure

There are no side effects for the lifestyle and dietary changes that can treat hypotension.

The medications used to treat hypotension have several side effects, some of which may be serious. Fludrocortisone can make certain infections worse, so its essential to discuss this medication with your doctor. The most common side effects from fludrocortisone are:

  • Increased risk of infection.

The most common side effects from midodrine are:

  • Numbness or tingling.
  • Goosebumps and chills.

What Can I Do For Myself

There are other things you can do for yourself to help with your symptoms.

  • Wear supportive elastic stockings . They put extra pressure on your legs which helps to improve circulation and raise your blood pressure. For some people this can be enough, but speak to your GP first because they arent suitable for everyone.
  • Stand up slowly from sitting or lying down. You can try other simple movements to get the blood flowing before you stand up, such as straightening and bending your legs.
  • Avoid standing for long periods of time.
  • Drink enough water throughout the day, around 2 litres, so you dont get dehydrated.
  • Eat little and often throughout the day. This avoids low blood pressure after eating.

Read more about how .

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How To Raise Blood Pressure Quickly

Low blood pressure can turn into a dangerous condition because it can cause damage to the vital organs of the body. It therefore become imperative to raise low blood pressure to the normal levels. The following article will take you through some of the ways by which this can be accomplished.

Low blood pressure can turn into a dangerous condition because it can cause damage to the vital organs of the body. It therefore become imperative to raise low blood pressure to the normal levels. The following article will take you through some of the ways by which this can be accomplished.

Low blood pressure is caused when there is inadequate flow of blood to the varied organs of the body, especially the heart and brain. Blood is responsible for supplying the body with oxygen and other essential nutrients, thus when the pressure of the blood flow drops, it causes a lot of adverse effects that include, in its severe form, a damage to your vital organs. Low blood pressure will lead to symptoms of nausea, dizziness and fainting, among others. Though this condition is not usually considered dangerous, if there is a sudden drop in the pressure and it leads to fainting or dizziness, it can lead to complications . This is especially true in the case of old people.

Diagnosis Of Low Blood Pressure

Lowering Blood Pressure in 5 Minutes
  • Measuring blood pressure

  • Tests to determine cause

The doctor measures blood pressure and pulse while the person is lying down for a few minutes. If the blood pressure is not low and the person feels well, the doctor has the person stand up and rechecks the blood pressure right after standing up, and after a few minutes of standing. Other tests may be done to determine the cause of the low blood pressure, such as:

  • Blood tests

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Warnings For Other Groups

For pregnant women: Fludrocortisone is a category C pregnancy drug. That means two things:

  • Research in animals has shown harmful effects to the fetus when the mother takes the drug.
  • There havent been enough studies done in humans to be certain how the drug might affect the fetus.
  • Talk to your doctor if youre pregnant or plan to become pregnant. Fludrocortisone should be used during pregnancy only if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the fetus.

    For women who are breastfeeding: Corticosteroids may pass into your breast milk. This could cause side effects in your child if you breastfeed while taking fludrocortisone. You and your doctor may need to decide whether youll take fludrocortisone or breastfeed.

    For seniors: If youre 65 years or older, you may be more sensitive to the effects from this medication, including its side effects. Your doctor may give you a smaller dose because too much of this drug in your body can be dangerous

    For children: The safety and effectiveness of this drug havent been established in children. Your doctor should monitor your childs growth and development closely because this drug may slow down growth in children.

    All possible dosages and forms may not be included here. Your dose, form, and how often you take it will depend on:

    • your age
    • how severe your condition is
    • other medical conditions you have
    • how you react to the first dose

    New Findings Focus On Diastolic Blood Pressurethe Second Number In Your Blood Pressure Reading

    Image: mangostock/Thinkstock

    Of the two numbers that make up your blood pressure reading, the first one typically gets more attention. That’s because as people age, their arteries lose their elasticity, and the inner walls are more likely to accumulate cholesterol-laden plaque. These factors tend to raise systolic blood pressure, a measure of the pressure inside the arteries when the heart contracts to pump blood throughout the body.

    Current guidelines suggest that most people should aim for a systolic blood pressure reading of 140 millimeters of mercury or lower. But last year, a widely publicized clinical trial suggested that a target of 120 mm Hg could further reduce the dangers associated with high blood pressure .

    Yet reaching that lower target required an average of three blood pressure medications, which resulted in more side effects. Now, two recent observational studies highlight some concerns about blood pressure that’s too low, particularly with regard to diastolic blood pressure. Diastolic blood pressure represents the pressure between beats when the heart relaxes.

    Read Also: Low Blood Pressure And Heart Disease

    When To Worry About Low Blood Pressure

    We all know that high blood pressure can be dangerous. But what about low blood pressure

    Also called hypotension, low blood pressure is not a problem if youre healthy and show no signs or symptoms of the condition. However, abnormally low blood pressure can cause problems such as dizziness and fainting and can be a sign that other serious conditions, such as heart disease, are present.

    Hypertension: What You Need To Know As You Age

    Do You Know Your Blood Pressure Numbers?

    You cant see high blood pressure, also called hypertension. And most ofthe time, you cant feel it. But if youre among the 78 million Americanswith hypertension or are one of the 70 million with prehypertension, its important to understandits effects on your healthand to take action today to bring your numbersdown to healthier levels.

    Blood pressure is the force of blood against the inner walls of yourarteries. It has normal fluctuations throughout the dayfalling when yourerelaxed or asleep, rising naturally in the morning, and increasingtemporarily when youre under stress, excited or exercising. But when yourresting blood pressure level rises too high, it can scar, stiffen and/orweaken blood vessels. This effect can double your risk for aheart attack quadruple your odds for astroke raise your risk forheart failure, vision loss, kidney problems,dementiaand circulation problems such asperipheral artery disease weaken your bones and contribute toerectile dysfunctionin men.

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    Low Blood Pressure And Pregnancy

    A drop in blood pressure is common during the first 24 weeks of pregnancy. The circulatory system starts to expand, and hormonal changes cause your blood vessels to dilate.

    If you experience low blood pressure symptoms, let your OB-GYN know. You may need to pay more attention to your hydration during this time.

    Pregnancy-related low blood pressure usually goes away later on in the pregnancy or shortly after delivery.

    Its important to have your blood pressure checked and monitored during pregnancy to eliminate any underlying causes for it, such as anemia or an ectopic pregnancy.

    Talk to your healthcare provider about your overall activity level and dietary habits to determine what changes, if any, you should make.

    What About Blood Pressure Thats Too Low

    Low blood pressure is known as hypotension. In adults, a blood pressure reading of 90/60 mm Hg or below is often considered hypotension.

    Hypotension can be dangerous because blood pressure thats too low doesnt supply your body and heart with enough oxygenated blood.

    Some potential causes of hypotension can include:

    • heart problems

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