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What’s Your Normal Blood Pressure

The Increased Importance Of Home Blood Pressure Monitoring

Blood Pressure – What is Normal Blood Pressure – How To Lower Blood Pressure

The new blood pressure guidelines also encourage additional monitoring . You can do this by checking it on your own at home with a home blood pressure monitor or using a wearable digital monitor that continually takes blood pressure readings as you go about your life.

The added monitoring can help reduce masked hypertension or white coat high blood pressure .

There are clear, helpful directions for setting patients up with a home blood pressure monitor. This includes a recommendation to give people specific instructions on when not to check blood pressure.

If you are interested in checking out some home blood pressure monitors or sphygmomanometers you can check out the Blood Pressure Products page in this website.

This leads me to the next section of my article which covers the right way to take your blood pressure at home

Know Your Numbers: Blood Pressure

Knowing and understanding key heart numbers blood pressure, cholesterol and heart rate, along with your family history allow you and your health care team to determine your risk for developing heart and cardiovascular disease. Knowing your risk is critical to preventing heart disease and for taking steps to improve your overall heart health.

What Type Of Results Do You Get

Your blood pressure reading has two measurements:

  • Systolic blood pressure : This is the pressure in your arteries when your heart is beating and sending blood into your arteries.
  • Diastolic blood pressure : This is the pressure in your arteries when your heart is at rest between heartbeats.

Providers give the measurements as millimeters of mercury . They started using these measurements when instruments to measure blood pressure contained mercury.

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What Are The Symptoms Of High Blood Pressure In Women

High blood pressure, also known as HBP or hypertension, is widely misunderstood and is called the silent killer because there can often be no symptoms. We often assume it affects those who are type-A personalities, tense and aggressive. But the truth is, it has nothing to do with personality traits. In fact, you can be the most relaxed, calm person and still suffer from HBP.

What Your Blood Pressure Numbers Mean

Blood Pressure Chart &  Numbers (Normal Range, Systolic, Diastolic)

Blood pressure is the force that blood applies to the walls of arteries as it’s pumped throughout the body.

“Your arteries are built to withstand some pressure, but there’s a limit to what they can handle,” says Dr. Nasir.

This is why blood pressure is measured and segmented based on how it affects our health. The four blood pressure categories are:

  • Normal blood pressure: Lower than 120/80 mmHg
  • Elevated blood pressure: Between 120-129/80 mmHg
  • High blood pressure, stage 1: Between 130-139/80-90 mmHg
  • High blood pressure, stage 2: 140/90 mmHg or higher

Only normal blood pressure is considered healthy. Having elevated or high blood pressure damages your heart and arteries by:

  • Forcing your heart to pump harder. Over time, this causes heart muscle to thicken, making it harder for the heart to fill with and pump blood.
  • Narrowing and hardening your arteries. This can limit the normal flow of blood.

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How Does Blood Pressure Affect My Health

Even if you’re only in your 20s or 30s, long-term studies show that having elevated blood pressure significantly increases your risk of developing serious health conditions later in life.

“Uncontrolled high blood pressure is a major risk factor for heart disease in middle age, which is the leading cause of death in the U.S.,” says Dr. Nasir. “It’s also a risk factor for stroke, kidney disease and several eye conditions.”

Plus, high blood pressure affects more than just your health there are financial implications, too. A person with high blood pressure spends almost $2,000 a year on the associated medications and health costs. These costs skyrocket if high blood pressure is left uncontrolled and serious medical conditions, such as heart disease, result.

How Can I Be More Active

  • Check first with your healthcare provider before increasing your physical activity. Ask your provider what type and amount of exercise is right for you.
  • Choose aerobic activities such as walking, biking or swimming.
  • Start slowly and increase activity gradually. Aim for a regular routine of activity five times a week for 30 to 45 minutes each session.

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Do Blood Pressure Medications Work

Yes, blood pressure medications can help lower blood pressure while youre taking them. But your blood pressure rises again if you stop taking them because blood pressure drugs dont treat the cause .

Less than half of patients keep taking their blood pressure medications for two reasons.

  • You cant feel high blood pressure
  • Blood pressure medications usually have unpleasant side effects such as cramps, fatigue, and erectile dysfunction.

If you dont make lifestyle changes, dont bother taking blood pressure medications, because they wont work effectively ~Luke Laffin, MD.

More New Blood Pressure Guidelines Changes

What is normal blood pressure?
  • Only prescribing medication for High Blood Pressure Stage I hypertension if a patient has already had a cardiovascular event like a heart attack or stroke, or is at high risk of heart attack or stroke based on age, the presence of diabetes mellitus, chronic kidney disease or calculation of atherosclerotic risk .
  • Recognizing that many people will need two or more types of medications to control their blood pressure. In addition, people may take their pills more consistently if multiple medications are combined into a single pill.
  • Identifying socioeconomic status and psychosocial stress as risk factors for high blood pressure that should be considered in a patients plan of care.

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Side Effects Of Low Blood Pressure

Low blood pressure may not be discussed as often as high blood pressure, but it should be addressed, as prolonged low blood pressure can negatively affect your organs.

A certain amount of blood pressure is needed to maintain blood flow to the organs, says Dr. Wong. The blood supplies oxygen and nutrients to these organs. If the blood pressure is too low, an adequate blood supply cannot get to these organs.

If left untreated, low blood pressure can increase your risk of fainting, heart attack and organ damage, adds Dr. Desai.

How Do Health Care Professionals Measure My Blood Pressure

First, a health care professional wraps an inflatable cuff around your arm. The health care professional then inflates the cuff, which gently tightens on your arm. The cuff has a gauge on it that will measure your blood pressure.

The health care professional will slowly let air out of the cuff while listening to your pulse with a stethoscope and watching the gauge. This process is quick and painless. If using a digital or automatic blood pressure cuff, the health care professional will not need to use a stethoscope.

The gauge uses a unit of measurement called millimeters of mercury to measure the pressure in your blood vessels.

If you have high blood pressure, talk to your health care team about steps to take to control your blood pressure to lower your risk for heart disease and stroke.

Use this list of questions to ask your health care team pdf icon to help you manage your blood pressure.

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The Blood Pressure Chart

Once you know your numbers, you can use the blood pressure chart to see what they mean and if your blood pressure is in the healthy range. The chart is suitable for adults of any age, as the cut-off point for diagnosing high blood pressure doesnt change with age.

How to use the blood pressure chart

Simply find your top number on the left side of the chart and your bottom number on the bottom. Where the two lines meet is your blood pressure.

How To Treat Low Blood Pressure

Whats High Blood Pressure Numbers

Low blood pressure can be prevented or treated using the following methods:

  • Consume lots of fluids
  • Stay hydrated, especially during hot weather or during viral flu
  • Drink more nonalcoholic drinks
  • Exercise regularly to encourage blood flow
  • Avoid sitting or standing quickly
  • While rising, take care to sit upright for a few seconds and then get off the bed
  • Stay away from heavy lifting
  • Avoid standing still for a prolonged time
  • Avoid straining while passing stools
  • Avoid prolonged exposure to hot water such as sauna, hot water springs, and spas
  • Compression stocking covering the thigh and calf restricts the blood flow to the lower part of the body
  • Try eating smaller, more frequent meals to avoid post-meal dizziness
  • Any consumption of over-the-counter medications should be reported to the physician.

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What Do Blood Pressure Numbers Mean

Blood pressure is measured using two numbers:

The first number, called systolic blood pressure, measures the pressure in your arteries when your heart beats.

The second number, called diastolic blood pressure, measures the pressure in your arteries when your heart rests between beats.

If the measurement reads 120 systolic and 80 diastolic, you would say, 120 over 80, or write, 120/80 mmHg.

What Diet Helps Control High Blood Pressure

  • Eat foods that are lower in fat, salt and calories, such as skim or 1% milk, fresh vegetables and fruits, and whole-grain rice and pasta.
  • Use flavorings, spices and herbs to make foods tasty without using salt. The optimal recommendation for salt in your diet is to have less than 1,500 milligrams of sodium a day. Don’t forget that most restaurant foods and many processed and frozen foods contain high levels of salt. Use herbs and spices that do not contain salt in recipes to flavor your food. Dont add salt at the table.
  • Avoid or cut down on foods high in fat or salt, such as butter and margarine, regular salad dressings, fatty meats, whole milk dairy products, fried foods, processed foods or fast foods and salted snacks.
  • Ask your provider if you should increase potassium in your diet. Discuss the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension diet with your provider. The DASH diet emphasizes adding fruits, vegetables and whole grains to your diet while reducing the amount of sodium. Since its rich in fruits and vegetables, which are naturally lower in sodium than many other foods, the DASH diet makes it easier to eat less salt and sodium.

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Where Can I Get My Blood Pressure Checked

You can get your blood pressure measured

  • By a health care team member at a doctors office.
  • At a pharmacy that has a digital blood pressure measurement machine.
  • With a home blood pressure monitor that you can use yourself.

Take this form pdf icon with you on your first blood pressure visit to record important blood pressure-related information.

High Blood Pressure Symptoms

Whats the Best Blood Pressure for Older Adults?

High blood pressure is known as the silent killer because it typically has no symptoms. In fact, most people dont even realize they have hypertension until their blood pressure is monitored.

Symptoms dont develop until the numbers get very high and organs get damaged, often irreversibly, says Dr. Desai.

If you have severe hypertension, you might notice the below symptoms, some of which were reported by patients in a study in the British Journal of General PracticeGoodhart A. Hypertension from the patients perspective. British Journal of General Practice. 2016 66:570. :

  • Headaches

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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 . This is the point where your risk of serious health problems goes up. They might prescribe and advise you to make changes to your 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 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 will help you to keep it in the healthy range. 90/60mmHg or lower you may have low 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.

Normal Blood Pressure By Age Race And Gender

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.

The reason for this variance can range from substandard insurance coverage and poor access to healthcare to gaps in the use of medications to treat multiple conditions with reduced compliance in certain groups, he adds.

As for gender, theres increasing evidence for risk of cardiovascular disease in women with blood pressures lower than what is considered normal, says Jennifer Wong, M.D., medical director of non-invasive cardiology at MemorialCare Heart and Vascular Institute at Orange Coast Medical Center in Fountain Valley, California.

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Effects Of Abnormal Blood Pressure

If the high blood pressure persists for a longer period of time it can cause heart and heart related diseases and vital organ damage. The reported long-term ill effects of high blood pressure are as mentioned below:

Therefore, it is essential to diagnose and adopt proper treatment to lower the risk of developing above symptoms.

Heart Rate Vs Blood Pressure

Gaining Good Knowledge of What is Normal Blood Pressure through Blood ...

Blood pressure measures the force that moves blood through your blood vessels while your heart rate is the number of times your heart beats per minute. They are both important health indicators, but they are measured independently and dont necessarily increase or decrease synchronously.

A temporary increase in heart rate, such as during exercise, is not considered problematic. In fact, your heart is expected to rise during a bout of activity and return to its resting rate afterward. And the more intense you work, the more you should expect your heart rate to rise during exercise. Your heart rate can safely double during activity so long as it returns to its resting rate relatively soon after you finish your workout.

Significant increases in blood pressure, on the other hand, are not normal and should be monitored and shared with your health care provider.

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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.

How Do I Know If I Have High Blood Pressure

Theres only one way to know if you have high blood pressure: Have a doctor or other health professional measure it. Measuring your blood pressure is quick and painless.

Talk with your health care team about regularly measuring your blood pressure at home, also called self-measured blood pressure monitoring.

High blood pressure is called the silent killer because it usually has no warning signs or symptoms, and many people do not know they have it.

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When Is Blood Pressure Checked

Your healthcare provider should check your blood pressure at every annual checkup if your blood pressure is normal. If your blood pressure readings are high at your appointments, your provider may ask you to check your blood pressure at home anywhere from several times a day to once a week.

You should take blood pressure readings at the same time of day each time. You can take two or three readings one after the other, as long as you wait one minute before the next one. When youre done, figure out the average of the two or three readings you took.

Your provider may ask you to wear a blood pressure monitor for 24 hours. The monitor is usually set to take blood pressure every 15 to 30 minutes while you do your normal activities.

What Is Normal Blood Pressure Blood Pressure Chart By Age And Gender

What is normal blood pressure?

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 age, 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.

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