What Is Normal Blood Pressure Blood Pressure Chart By Age And Gender
Do you want to know if your blood pressure is normal or dangerous?
High blood pressure, or hypertension, is a serious health problem for adults. As you or a loved one ages, youre worried about how high blood pressure can cause problems such as heart attack, dementia, or stroke.
The good news is you can catch it early. And you can lower your blood pressure naturally with simple lifestyle changes.
In this article, youll learn what is normal blood pressure and the ranges, why high blood pressure is dangerous, what causes it, and how to lower blood pressure. Plus, learn how one culture maintains normal blood pressure their entire lives.
Blood Pressure In Your Leg Vs Your Arm
Blood pressure readings are generated as two numbers: a systolic number and a diastolic number. The Mayo Clinic explains that systolic refers to the maximum pressure the heart exerts while beating, whereas diastolic refers to arterial pressure between beats. A top reading below 120 coupled with a bottom reading below 80 is considered “normal.”
What Are The Types Of High Blood Pressure
If you have high blood pressure, your medical provider will diagnose you with either primary or secondary high blood pressure .
- Primary high blood pressure is the most common type of high blood pressure. Its causes include aging, unhealthy habits, and not getting enough exercise. Primary hypertension generally increases with age.
- Secondary high blood pressure is caused by medical conditions or medication side effects.
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Why Does Normal Blood Pressure Range Change With Age
What is generally considered to be a healthy blood pressure range increases with age. This is because changes in the cardiovascular system as a result of the aging process are inevitable, to a degree. Even if you remain active, eat well, and avoid unhealthy habits like smoking, aging leads to a gradual stiffening of large arteries, which can increase blood pressure.
Of course, this does not mean lifestyle choices are totally irrelevant. A 60-year-old who has consistently lived a healthy lifestyle may have lower blood pressure than a 30-year-old who has not.
How Common Is Hypertension In Children
Hypertension is becoming increasingly common in children and adolescents. A recent study that looked at 15,000 adolescents found that nearly one in five had hypertension. And theres reason to believe that hypertension is vastly underdiagnosed in children, since:
- it can be difficult to measure in infants and young children
- its sometimes challenging to identify
- its often thought of as not something that really affects kids
The rise in the number of children with primary hypertension in the United States is thought to correlate with the rise of obesity.
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Systemic Arterial Pressure And Age
Fetal blood pressure
In pregnancy, it is the fetal heart and not the mother’s heart that builds up the fetal blood pressure to drive blood through the fetal circulation. The blood pressure in the fetal aorta is approximately 30 mmHg at 20 weeks of gestation, and increases to approximately 45 mmHg at 40 weeks of gestation.
The average blood pressure for full-term infants:
- Systolic 6595 mmHg
In children, the normal ranges for blood pressure are lower than for adults and depend on height. Reference blood pressure values have been developed for children in different countries, based on the distribution of blood pressure in children of these countries.
Diastolic Blood Pressure: How Low Is Too Low
- May 17, 2015
Blood pressure consists of two numbers. Systolic pressure, the force exerted on blood vessels when the heart beats, is the upper number. Diastolic pressure, the force exerted when the heart is at rest, is on the bottom in more ways than one. Systolic pressure attracts the lions share of attention from physicians and patients, says UAB cardiologist Jason Guichard, M.D., Ph.D.
Physicians are busy people, and like it or not they often focus on a single number, Guichard said. Systolic blood pressure is the focus, and diastolic pressure is almost completely ignored. That is a mistake, he argues. The majority of your arteries feed your organs during systole. But your coronary arteries are different they are surrounding the aortic valve, so they get blood only when the aortic valve closes and that happens in diastole.
Diastolic pressure has been getting more attention lately, however, thanks in part to an influential paper in Hypertension, written in 2011 by Guichard and Ali Ahmed, M.D., then a professor of medicine in UABs Division of Gerontology, Geriatrics and Palliative Care and now the associate chief of staff for Health and Aging at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Washington, D.C.
Most people are trying to lower their blood pressure. What would you define as too low, and why is that a problem?
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What Are The Causes Of Hypertension
What is a normal blood pressure
Furthermore, mushrooms contain numerous antioxidant substances that shield your blood vessels from oxidative harm, which is the reason why theyre so healthful in regulating the overall integrity of vessels endothelium. Certain mushrooms have a documented benefit in the management of blood pressure.
SHIITAKE MUSHROOMS: These are considered as low calories diets while enriched in minerals and antioxidants. These are ideal foods for people trying to lose weight which is the major risk factor of hypertension.
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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
Difference In Blood Pressure Between Arms Might Reflect
Editor I believe that McAlister and Straus underestimate the frequency and significance of a blood pressure difference between the arms. 1 They quote 6% from the paper by Harrison et al, but this group reported a difference in 10/131 normotensive subjects for systolic or diastolic differences, 44/310 hypertensive patients for a systolic difference, and 31/310 hypertensive
Which Is More Important: Systolic Or Diastolic Blood Pressure
When it comes to measuring high blood pressure , many wonder whether the number on top is more important than the number on the bottom .
Typically, systolic blood pressure is given more attention as a risk factor for heart disease. However, both systolic and diastolic blood pressure are equally important in monitoring the health of your heart.
What the numbers measure
- Systolic blood pressure indicates the amount of pressure being exerted on the walls of your arteries when your heart beats.
- Diastolic blood pressure indicates the amount of pressure being exerted on the walls of your arteries in between heartbeats.
Blood pressure ranges
- Normal: Under 120/80 mm Hg
- Elevated: 120-129 systolic, under 80 mm Hg diastolic
- Hypertension Stage I: 130-139 systolic, 80-89 mm Hg diastolic
- Hypertension Stage II: Over 140/90 mm Hg
- Hypertensive crisis: Over 180/120 mmHg. This is a dangerously high reading and requires immediate medical attention.
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Normal Diastolic Blood Pressure
What is the normal range of diastolic pressure for adults? A normal range of diastolic blood pressure for adults is 60 mmHg to 79 mmHg.
If diastolic is less than 80 mmHg and systolic is less than 120 mmHg, a doctor will typically suggest the following:
- Follow a heart healthy diet.
- Engage in regular physical activity.
- Continue avoiding unhealthy habits like excess alcohol or smoking.
- Monitor blood pressure readings.
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. This can be dangerous because blood pressure that is too low doesnt supply your body and heart with enough oxygenated blood.
Some potential causes of hypotension can include:
- heart problems
What do the numbers mean?
Everyone would like to have healthy blood pressure. But what exactly does that mean?
When your doctor takes your blood pressure, its expressed as a measurement with two numbers, with one number on top and one on the bottom , like a fraction. For example, 120/80 mm Hg.
The top number refers to the amount of pressure in your arteries during the contraction of your heart muscle. This is called systolic pressure.
The bottom number refers to your blood pressure when your heart muscle is between beats. This is called diastolic pressure.
Both numbers are important in determining the state of your heart health.
Numbers greater than the ideal range indicate that your heart is working too hard to pump blood to the rest of your body.
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Keeping Your Blood Pressure Optimal
A number of lifestyle habits are very powerful to keep your blood pressure healthy and optimal. If you currently have normal blood pressure, paying attention to these habits will likely keep your blood pressure healthy and normal for many years to come.27
If your blood pressure is trending higher or if you are already being treated for hypertension, adopting or focusing on these lifestyle habits may stop the rise or bring it back into normal range, either preventing the need for medication or enabling the removal of medications.
- Keep a healthy weight or lose weight adopting a low-carb diet can be a great way to lose weight and help keep blood pressure normal.28
- Reduce or eliminate added sugars, especially in processed foods and sugar-sweetened beverages. Some experts now think sugar, especially fructose, may be more influential to blood pressure than salt.29
- Exercise regularly.
You can read more in our guide on how to normalize your blood pressure naturally.
What Is Normal Blood Pressure
For years we have been told that a normal blood pressure reading is 120/80 however, more and more doctors have now lowered these numbers to 115/75. Blood pressure is different for everyone as many factors can have an effect on the numbers.
Our blood pressure refers to the amount of force behind the blood as it hits the arterial walls. As the heart pumps the blood, an ideal pressure sees the blood push against the walls that are flexible enough to expand and retract easily. Over time, our age, diet, and physical activity play a role on the elasticity of our blood vessels. With a loss of flexibility due to hardening of the walls, the heart needs to work harder to push the blood.
These factors determine the blood pressure numbers. The systolic number is the top number, and it indicates the pressure as the heart beats or pushes the blood throughout the body. The diastolic number is the bottom number, and refers to the pressure in the arteries when the heart rests between beats. During this time, the heart receives oxygen as it fills with blood.
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Elevated Systolic Blood Pressure
An elevated blood pressure reading is when systolic blood pressure is between 120-129 mmHg and diastolic is less than 80 mmHg.
If systolic blood pressure is elevated, the risk of developing high blood pressure is greater. For consistent readings in this range a doctor will typically recommend the following:
- Recommend lifestyle changes.
- Attend scheduled physician visits.
What Do The Numbers Mean
When a healthcare professional takes your blood pressure, its expressed as a measurement with two numbers, one number on top and one on the bottom , like a fraction. For example, 120/80 mm Hg.
Blood pressure is measured in millimeters of mercury. Thats what the mm/Hg stands for. Heres what the numbers mean:
- Your systolic pressure is the pressure of the blood in your arteries when your heart contracts or beats.
- Your diastolic pressure is the pressure of the blood in your arteries between beats, when your heart relaxes.
Both numbers are important in determining the state of your heart health.
Numbers greater than the ideal range may be a sign that your heart is working too hard to pump blood to the rest of your body.
For a normal reading, your blood pressure needs to show:
- a systolic pressure thats above 90 mm Hg and less than 120 mm Hg, and
- a diastolic pressure thats between 60 mm Hg and less than 80 mm Hg
The American Heart Association considers blood pressure to be within the normal range when both your systolic and diastolic numbers are in these ranges.
You may need to be even more mindful of your lifestyle if high blood pressure runs in your family.
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Get Regular Blood Pressure Checks
If your blood pressure is in the healthy range and you have no other risk factors for cardiovascular disease, and no personal or family history of high blood pressure, it is still important to have a check at least every two years. Your doctor can also check your blood pressure during routine visits.
If your blood pressure is highnormal , or if you have other risk factors for cardiovascular disease, such as a personal or family history of high blood pressure, stroke or heart attack, it is best to have it checked more frequently such as every 6 to 12 months or as directed by your doctor. Ask your doctor for advice.
Is It Normal For Blood Pressure To Fluctuate
It’s normal for blood pressure to vary somewhat throughout the day. Stress, exercise, and sleep can all make a difference. But if your blood pressure often changes significantly from one healthcare visit to another, there may a problem.
Studies have found that visit-to-visit changes in blood pressure are sometimes linked to a higher risk of heart disease and early death.
This article explains why your blood pressure numbers may be high sometimes and normal other times. It also offers advice about when to see a healthcare provider.
Verywell / Cindy Chung
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Blood Pressure: Can It Be Higher In One Arm
Answer From Sheldon G. Sheps, M.D. Generally, a small difference in blood pressure readings between arms isn’t a health concern. However, a difference of more than 10 millimeters of mercury for either your top number or bottom number may be a sign of blocked arteries in the arms, diabetes or other health problem.
What Is A Healthy Blood Pressure
When the heart is squeezing blood into the arteries, the pressure is high. When the heart is relaxed, the pressure is lower.
Your blood pressure is a measurement taken of the highest reading and the lowest reading . It is given as 2 figures highest over lowest or systolic over diastolic. Blood pressure is measured in mmHg, which refers to millimetres of mercury.
Your blood pressure varies from day to day, even moment to moment. Most doctors would say that a healthy blood pressure is higher than 90/60 mmHg but lower than about 140/90.
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How Is Blood Pressure Measured
Blood pressure is measured in millimetres of mercury and is given as 2 figures:
- systolic pressure the pressure when your heart pushes blood out
- diastolic pressure the pressure when your heart rests between beats
For example, if your blood pressure is “140 over 90” or 140/90mmHg, it means you have a systolic pressure of 140mmHg and a diastolic pressure of 90mmHg.
As a general guide:
- ideal blood pressure is considered to be between 90/60mmHg and 120/80mmHg
- high blood pressure is considered to be 140/90mmHg or higher
- low blood pressure is considered to be 90/60mmHg or lower
High Blood Pressure Categories
You can divide high blood pressure into five categories, according to guidelines from the American College of Cardiology:
- Normal: Normal blood pressure in adults is any blood pressure below 120/80.
- Elevated: In adults, elevated blood pressure is a systolic reading of 120-129 and a diastolic reading below 80.
- Hypertension stage I: This stage includes blood pressures ranges of 130-139 or 80-89 .
- Hypertension stage II: This stage includes blood pressures ranges above 140 or above 90 .
- Hypertensive crisis: Severely elevated blood pressure is defined as greater than 180 and/or 120 and associated with new or worsening organ damage.
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Stroke And Brain Problems
High blood pressure can cause the arteries that supply blood and oxygen to the brain to burst or be blocked, causing a stroke. Brain cells die during a stroke because they do not get enough oxygen. Stroke can cause serious disabilities in speech, movement, and other basic activities. A stroke can also kill you.
Having high blood pressure, especially in midlife, is linked to having poorer cognitive function and dementia later in life. Learn more about the link between high blood pressure and dementia from the National Institutes of Healths Mind Your Risks®external icon campaign.
What Can I Do To Prevent Or Manage High Blood Pressure
Many people with high blood pressure can lower their blood pressure into a healthy range or keep their numbers in a healthy range by making lifestyle changes. Talk with your health care team about
- Getting at least 150 minutes of physical activity each week
- Not smoking
- Managing stress
In addition to making positive lifestyle changes, some people with high blood pressure need to take medicine to manage their blood pressure. Learn more about medicines for high blood pressure.
Talk with your health care team right away if you think you have high blood pressure or if youve been told you have high blood pressure but do not have it under control.
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