You visit the doctor, they take your blood pressure, and they tell you everything is normal. Everyone gets their blood pressure tested, yet many don’t know what it means and how it can affect their lives. We’re here to help you answer the question, “What is normal blood pressure?” and help you learn more about it so that you can stay healthy.
What is Blood Pressure?
When your heart beats, it is in the process of pumping blood throughout the rest of your body. This action is what lets you breathe and gives your body energy.
Your blood pressure is based on how hard the blood must push against your blood vessels when trying to move along its path. When your arteries and heart must work harder, your blood pressure rises, and the added strain can lead to heart attacks and strokes.
How to Read Your Blood Pressure Levels
Blood pressure is a measurement shown as two numbers. The top number is called systolic, while the number on the bottom is known as diastolic. They are shown as a fraction—for example, 120/80 mm Hg (millimetres of mercury).
The top number looks at your systolic pressure or the amount of pressure in your arteries during the contraction of your heart.
The bottom number looks at your diastolic pressure, which is your blood pressure when your heart is in between beats.
Both numbers are important when analyzing the state of your heart.
So, What Blood Pressure is Normal?
A normal blood pressure reading has the range of a systolic pressure between 90 -120 mm Hg and a diastolic pressure between 60 and 80 mm Hg.
Therefore, a normal reading would be any blood pressure below 120/80 mm Hg and above 90/60 mm Hg.
Numbers outside of this range means that your heart is working harder to pump blood throughout your system.
Blood Pressure in the Hypertension and Hypotension Stages
High blood pressure is known as hypertension. Possible symptoms include chest pain, shortness of breath, visual changes, loss of muscle control, blood in your urine, dizziness and headaches.
Low blood pressure is known as hypotension. Possible causes include heart problems, dehydration, pregnancy, blood loss, severe infection, malnutrition, severe allergic reactions and endocrine problems.
How Can You Help Keep Your Blood Pressure Levels Steady?
To reduce the chances of the above health issues, the life changes you make don’t need to be revolutionary.
Finding the time to exercise on a regular and consistent basis is important, even if it’s just for a short walk. Managing stress, eating a nutritious diet and maintaining a healthy weight are other ways to lower high blood pressure.
You could also look at ways of reducing your sodium intake and caffeine levels.
How Can You Test Your Blood Pressure?
Unsure about your current blood pressure levels? Check them for free at your local pharmacy.