I know my blood pressure runs incredibly low, and that can also be just as deadly.
As I am driving in Monday morning I had a little bit of a scary moment, and, the reason I am writing on Blood Pressure.
- Systolic pressure. The first (top) number in a blood pressure reading, this is the amount of pressure your heart generates when pumping blood through your arteries to the rest of your body.
- Diastolic pressure. The second (bottom) number in a blood pressure reading, this refers to the amount of pressure in your arteries when your heart is at rest between beats.
Although you can get an accurate blood pressure reading at any given time, blood pressure isn't always the same. It can vary considerably in a short amount of time — sometimes from one heartbeat to the next, depending on body position, breathing rhythm, stress level, physical condition, medications you take, what you eat and drink, and even time of day. Blood pressure is usually lowest at night and rises sharply on waking.
Blood pressure: How low can you go?What's considered low blood pressure for you may be normal for someone else. Most doctors consider chronically low blood pressure too low only if it causes noticeable symptoms.
Some experts define low blood pressure as readings lower than 90 mm Hg systolic or 60 mm Hg diastolic — you need to have only one number in the low range for your blood pressure to be considered lower than normal. In other words, if your systolic pressure is a perfect 115, but your diastolic pressure is 50, you're considered to have lower than normal pressure.
A sudden fall in blood pressure also can be dangerous. A change of just 20 mm Hg — a drop from 110 systolic to 90 mm Hg systolic, for example — can cause dizziness and fainting when the brain fails to receive an adequate supply of blood.
Athletes, or people who exercise regularly, tend to have lower blood pressure and a slower heart rate than those who are not as fit.
In my case it is both hereditary and because I workout on a regular basis. Unfortunately this time I happened to be driving on my near faint. My reading was 93/57 and a pulse of 55 when I arrived at the studio. This reading has been normal for me for many years, and that was after 3 cups of coffee!
There are two types of high blood pressure.
Primary (essential) hypertensionFor most adults, there's no identifiable cause of high blood pressure. This type of high blood pressure, called essential hypertension or primary hypertension, tends to develop gradually over many years.
Secondary hypertensionSome people have high blood pressure caused by an underlying condition. This type of high blood pressure, called secondary hypertension, tends to appear suddenly and cause higher blood pressure than does primary hypertension. Various conditions and medications can lead to secondary hypertension, including:
- Kidney problems
- Adrenal gland tumors
- Thyroid problems
- Certain defects in blood vessels you're born with (congenital)
- Certain medications, such as birth control pills, cold remedies, decongestants, over-the-counter pain relievers and some prescription drugs
- Illegal drugs, such as cocaine and amphetamines
- Alcohol abuse or chronic alcohol use
- Obstructive sleep apnea
Although a few people with early-stage high blood pressure may have dull headaches, dizzy spells or a few more nosebleeds than normal, these signs and symptoms usually don't occur until high blood pressure has reached a severe or life-threatening stage.
Blood Pressure Monitors are very inexpensive to purchase at the store locally or online. I encourage you to have one in your home!