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What Is Critically Low Blood Pressure

Normal Blood Pressure For Men And Women By Age

Critical Questions to Ask Your Doctor About Your High Blood Pressure

A normal blood pressure reading indicates that the heart and blood vessels are not working too hard pushing blood and that the blood is not exerting too much pressure on the walls of the vessels, says Aseem Desai, M.D., a cardiologist at Providence Mission Hospital in Southern California. Recent data from the American Heart Association suggests the optimal normal reading for adults over 20 is lower than 120/80 mmHgVirani S, et al. Heart disease and stroke statistics 2021 update . American Heart Association Journal. 2021 143:e254-e743. .

Dr. Desai notes blood pressure can vary depending on a persons age, gender, race and ethnicity, but it should still fall within the general normal range. While numbers lower than 120/80 are generally considered normal, Dr. Desai adds, The target blood pressure for treatment varies depending on age and associated co-morbidities .

Previously, guidance for normal blood pressure for adults varied by gender and specific age, but new data states normal blood pressure for adults as a collective is less than 120/80 mmHgHigh Blood Pressure Symptoms and Causes. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Accessed 7/16/2021. .

When it comes to race and ethnicity, Dr. Desai says certain groups have a higher rate of hypertension. Non-Hispanic Black people have a significantly higher rate of hypertension compared to non-Hispanic white people, and Hispanics and non-Hispanic Asians have lower rates than the first two, he says.

How Can I Prevent Low Blood Glucose

All people with diabetes:

  • If you experience low blood glucose often, ask your doctor if setting a higher goal for your A1C level may be appropriate.
  • Ask your doctor to look at the test results from your home blood glucose monitor. These results reveal how often you have low blood glucose and when these episodes occur. Your doctor will look for patterns to see if low glucose happens after exercise or at certain times of day, for example.
  • If you’ve had low blood glucose in the past, consider wearing a medical alert bracelet so that others will know that you have diabetes in the event of an emergency.
  • Keep a fast-acting carbohydrate in your bag, desk drawer, car and other places for easy access. Good options include hard candy, fruit juice or glucose paste or tablets, which can be purchased at most pharmacies.
  • Ask your doctor for an emergency glucagon kit. This kit contains a fast- acting medication that can be injected in case of loss of consciousness because of low blood glucose. Keep one kit at home and one at work or school.
  • Monitor your blood glucose regularly so that low levels can be corrected before symptoms progress.

Seeking Emergency Medical Attention

If a person experiences low blood pressure along with concerning symptoms such as a loss of consciousness, mental confusion, and a weak, rapid pulse and breathing pattern they should seek immediate medical attention.

In the emergency room, doctors may ask questions about a persons medical history, medications they may be taking, or any infections or accidents they may have had.

They may ask about or check for symptoms. They may also administer tests to check heart rate and blood pressure, and imaging tests to check the internal body and organs for other issues.

Even if a person is experiencing mild rather than severe symptoms along with low blood pressure, they should still seek guidance from a doctor.

Doctors may want to monitor the symptoms and test the blood pressure themselves to make any necessary diagnosis and administer treatment.

Aside from these events, a person may have low blood pressure and be in otherwise good health.

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When Is Low Blood Pressure An Emergency

In many cases, low blood pressure readings are not a cause for concern. A person with low blood pressure may not even be aware that their blood pressure is low, as it does not cause symptoms in many cases.

There is also no specific cutoff point at which blood pressure becomes too low or dangerously low, as it may vary from person to person.

Some people may have chronic low blood pressure and can be otherwise healthy. The note that most doctors will only consider chronic low blood pressure to be dangerous if it causes other symptoms.

Severe symptoms that come on suddenly may also be a cause for concern.

While symptoms may vary from person to person, they typically include:

If a person experiences any of these symptoms, they should contact a doctor.

When blood pressure is very low or drops rapidly, it can also be a medical emergency. The note that extremely low drops in blood pressure may put the bodys organs at risk of not getting enough blood, which may lead to shock.

Some concerning signs accompanying very low blood pressure to look out for include:

  • rapid, shallow breathing
  • very weak but rapid pulse
  • cold, clammy skin
  • blue hue to the skin

Anyone experiencing these symptoms should seek emergency medical attention.

What Is Considered A Low Blood Pressure Reading

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What Is Considered A Low Blood Pressure Reading. Healthy and unhealthy blood pressure ranges. Within certain limits, the lower your blood pressure reading is, the better. Use our blood pressure chart to learn what your blood pressure levels and numbers mean, including normal blood pressure and the difference between understanding your results is key to controlling high blood pressure. Blood pressure can be categorized into five different types, namely: How low is too low for blood pressure?

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When Low Blood Pressure Is An Emergency

If you frequently experience symptoms of low blood pressure, such as dizziness or fainting spells, you should consult a doctor. While low blood pressure, itself, usually isn’t fatal, there are serious medical situations where it is considered an emergency, and you should go to the hospital.

“The likelihood of dying from low blood pressure is low unless it is related to another disease process,” Weinberg says.

For example, a blood infection, or , can result in low blood pressure. Sepsis occurs when the chemicals released by the body to fight an infection trigger widespread inflammation, resulting in blood clotting that reduces blood flow to vital organs, such as your heart, kidneys, and brain. This can progress to septic shock and very low blood pressure, which may be fatal, and should be treated immediately.

Low blood pressure can also be affiliated with Addison’s disease a disorder in which the adrenal glands do not produce enough cortisol, a hormone that helps your body respond to stress. Lack of cortisol production can cause addisonian crisis, which is characterized by low blood pressure and can be fatal without proper treatment.

The treatment for low blood pressure varies depending on the cause. In severe cases, someone might need intravenous therapy to deliver fluids into the veins and raise blood pressure. In critical situations, such as septic shock, doctors may use drug therapies either orally or through an IV to quickly raise blood pressure.

Symptoms Of Low Blood Pressure

Most doctors will only consider chronically low blood pressure as dangerous if it causes noticeable signs and symptoms, such as:

  • Dizziness or lightheadedness
  • Fainting
  • Dehydration and unusual thirst
  • Dehydration can sometimes cause blood pressure to drop. However, dehydration does not always cause low blood pressure. Fever, vomiting, severe diarrhea, overuse of diuretics and strenuous exercise can all lead to dehydration, a potentially serious condition in which your body loses more water than you take in. Even mild dehydration can cause weakness, dizziness and fatigue.
  • Lack of concentration
  • Depression

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Low Blood Pressure Symptoms

Low blood pressure is pressure so low it causes symptoms or signs due to the low flow of blood through the arteries and veins. When the flow of blood is too low to deliver enough oxygen and nutrients to vital organs such as the brain, heart, and kidney, the organs do not function normally and may be temporarily or permanently damaged.

Unlike high blood pressure, low blood pressure is defined primarily by signs and symptoms of low blood flow and not by a specific blood pressure number. Some individuals routinely may have blood pressure numbers of 90/50 with no symptoms and therefore do not have low blood pressure. However, others who normally have higher blood pressures may develop symptoms of low blood pressure if their blood pressure drops to 100/60.

During pregnancy, blood pressure tends to decrease. Normal blood pressure during pregnancy may be lower than 100/60. Your OB/GYN or Midwife should monitor your bood pressure if you are pregnant.

What Is Blood Pressure

What To Do If Blood Pressure Is Too Low

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.

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How Is Low Blood Pressure Treated

If your blood pressure is naturally low and isnt causing you any problems it probably wont need any treatment. If you have symptoms and your doctor or nurse feels that you would benefit from treatment, they will try to find the cause of your low blood pressure so that they can find the best way to treat it.

The treatments will vary depending on the cause.

  • A change in medications. If your GP thinks that your blood pressure is caused by a medication youre taking they might want to try an alternative medication or a different dose.
  • Hormone replacement. If your low blood pressure is caused by a change in certain hormones, for example if your adrenal glands have been damaged, you may be referred to a specialist called an endocrinologist. They might prescribe hormone replacement medication.
  • Medicines to stimulate your nerves. If you have a neurological condition, you may be given medicines to stimulate the nerves.
  • Medicines for low blood pressure. These medicines narrow your blood vessels or expand the volume of your blood to raise your blood pressure. These are very rarely needed, as the treatments listed above and the changes you can make for yourself are usually enough.

What Can You Do To Help Relieve Symptoms Of Low Blood Pressure

Depending on the type of low blood pressure you have, you may be able to relieve some of your symptoms by:

  • Eating a healthy diet with fewer carbohydrates and smaller meals.
  • Drinking more water and avoiding alcohol.
  • Getting up slowly after youve been sitting or lying down.
  • Focusing on breathing a few times before you change position.
  • Wearing compression stockings.

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Other Causes Of Hypotension

In some cases the cause of the low blood pressure may result due to issues such as tachycardia, certain prescription medications or changes due to pregnancy which require monitoring and treatment as appropriate depending on the underlying cause 2. It remains important to keep in mind that prolonged low blood pressure can cause inadequate blood flow to the body resulting in myocardial infarction, strokes, renal failure and various types of shock 2. Each of these can also cause low blood pressure so it becomes crucial to treat signs and symptoms 2.

Low Vitamin B12 Levels Can Cause Dizziness

Delayed Orthostatic Hypotension

Deficiencies in this essential vitamin may lead to a number of neurological problems, including feeling off-balance, and having low blood pressure and decreased blood flow to your brain, says Whitman. Vitamin B12 deficiency is easy to detect and treat, but is an often overlooked cause of dizziness, he notes.

Ask your doctor about having a simple blood test to check your B12 levels if you’re having dizzy spells. Good sources of vitamin B12 include meat, dairy products, and fortified breakfast cereals.

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

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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.

Understanding Your Blood Pressure Numbers

When you get your blood pressure taken, it is given as two numbers. For example, you might be told that your blood pressure is 120/80.

This number is always written as a fraction and refers to two things happening in your heart. The top number in the fraction is called the Systolic pressure . This number measures the highest blood pressure in your arteries when the heart muscle contracts.

The bottom number in the fraction is called the Diastolic pressure . This number measures the lowest blood pressure in your arteries when the heart is relaxed between beats. Both numbers are important in determining if your BP is normal or if you have hypertension.

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Low Blood Pressure Chart

Considering low blood pressure chart in context of women, for men, during pregnancy and by age

Low blood pressure is defined as blood pressure that is below the normal expected for a person in a given environment. You may look at the blood pressure definition for a broader definition of blood pressure. The following low blood pressure chart is applicable to adult men and women. This is because both adult male and females are expected to have a similar normal blood pressure on average of 120/80mmHg.

This chart in discussion here may not be efficiently applicable on children because infants and children specifically have significantly lower blood pressure compared to adult men and women.

High blood pressure which is also known as hypertension is often presented with the aid of a high blood pressure chart showing the various stages of hypertension congruent with particular blood pressure numbers. Several challenges present when attempting to do the same for low blood pressure in the form of a low blood pressure chart.

Chief among these challenges is the widely agreed and understood relativity of a low blood pressure condition. The chart above summarizes known data of low blood pressure readings in some individuals and accompanying symptoms of low blood pressure.

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What Can I Do To Prevent Or Manage High Blood Pressure

Hypotension::Low Blood Pressure and Its Management.

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

Learn more about ways to manage and prevent high blood pressure.

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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Medications That Can Cause Low Blood Pressure

Medications might also cause your blood pressure to become too low.

Diuretics, tricyclic antidepressants, and erectile dysfunction drugs can also cause hypotension.

If a medication youre taking causes your blood pressure to become too low, your doctor may adjust the dosage or change the medication. This usually improves the hypotension.

Hypotension doesnt always cause symptoms. But sometimes low blood pressure means your vital organs arent receiving as much blood flow as they need. If this happens, you might feel tired or unwell. Symptoms of hypotension may include:

  • fatigue, an all-around sense of tiredness or lacking energy
  • lightheadedness, or feeling like you might faint
  • dizziness, feeling off-balance when you get up from a reclined or seated position, or while youre standing
  • nausea, a sense of discomfort in your stomach and feeling like you want to vomit
  • clammy skin, when you feel damp or sweaty to the touch
  • depression, persistent feelings such as sadness or low mood that interfere with your daily activities

Your treatment plan will depend on whats causing your hypotension. Your doctor will consider factors including:

  • the type of hypotension youre experiencing
  • the situations that may be causing hypotension for you

For some people, low blood pressure may not cause any symptoms. In cases where treatment is needed, your doctor may recommend lifestyle changes, medical treatment, or a combination of both.

What Is Normal Blood Pressure

A normal blood pressure is a systolic blood pressure that is less than 120 means that your systolic blood pressure ranges from 120 to 129 millimeters of mercury and a diastolic blood pressure that is less than 80 mmHg.

The American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Association recommend that adults should have their blood pressure checked at least once a year. If an adult has one or more risk factors for high blood pressurefor example, a family history or a history of smokingthey should be screened at least twice a year.

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