The 6 Big Health Risks of Low Blood Pressure — and What to Do About It
Low blood pressure, also called hypotension, is the condition when blood pressure falls below 90/60 mm Hg. Although some people have low blood pressure all of the time and have no problems, hypotension carries risks and could be an indication of a more serious condition. Oct 10, · Based upon American Heart Association guidelines, any reading greater than /80 is considered pre- hypertension or early high blood pressure. For low blood pressure to be a problem there needs to be a symptom associated with that low number. Readings below /80 may be normal depending upon the clinical situation.
Within certain limits, the lower your blood pressure reading is, the better. There is also no specific number at which day-to-day blood pressure is considered too pressuure, as long as none of the symptoms of trouble are present. Most doctors will only consider chronically low blood pressure as dangerous if it causes noticeable signs and symptoms, such as:. A single lower-than-normal reading is not cause for alarm, unless you are experiencing any other symptoms or problems. To help with your diagnosis, keep a record of your symptoms and activities at the time they occurred.
Is ehat blood pressure related to low heart rate? Find out. Your donation helps empower people everywhere to learn the facts and take action to lower their risk of heart problems. Written by American Heart Association editorial staff and reviewed by science and medicine advisers.
However, dehydration does predsure 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 os.
Even mild dehydration a loss of as little as 1 percent to 2 percent of body weight can cause weakness, dizziness danver fatigue. Decreases in blood volume: A decrease in blood volume can also cause blood pressure to drop. A significant loss of blood from major trauma, dehydration or severe internal bleeding reduces blood volume, leading to a severe drop in blood pressure. Other prescription and over-the-counter drugs may cause low blood pressure when taken in combination with high blood pressure medications.
Heart problems: Among the heart conditions that can lead to low blood pressure are an abnormally low heart rate bradycardiaproblems with heart valvesheart attack and heart failure. Severe infection septic shock : Septic shock xanger occur when bacteria leave the original preasure of an infection most often in the lungs, abdomen or urinary tract and enter the bloodstream. The bacteria then produce toxins that affect blood vessels, leading to a profound and life-threatening decline in blood pressure.
Allergic reaction anaphylaxis : Anaphylactic shock is a sometimes-fatal allergic reaction how to make a model of the lighthouse of alexandria can occur in people who are highly sensitive to drugs such as penicillin, to certain foods such as peanuts or to bee or wasp stings.
This bloos of shock is characterized by how to get to the marble caves chile problems, hives, itching, a swollen throat and a sudden, dramatic fall in blood pressure. Neurally mediated hypotension: Unlike orthostatic hypotension, this disorder causes blood pressure to drop presaure standing for long periods, leading to symptoms such as dizziness, nausea and fainting. This condition primarily affects young people and occurs because of a miscommunication between the heart and the brain.
Nutritional deficiencies: A lack of the essential vitamins B and folic acid can cause anemia, which in turn can lead llw low blood pressure. If you notice a sudden decline in blood pressure A single lower-than-normal reading is not cause for alarm, unless you are experiencing any other symptoms or problems.
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Symptoms of low blood pressure
Underlying causes of low blood pressure. Low blood pressure can occur with: Prolonged bed rest. Pregnancy: During the first 24 weeks of pregnancy, it’s common for blood pressure to drop. Decreases in blood volume: A decrease in blood volume can also cause blood pressure to drop. A significant loss of blood from major trauma, dehydration or. Usually, a blood pressure reading lower than 90 millimeters of mercury (mm Hg) for the top number (systolic) or 60 mm Hg for the bottom number (diastolic) is generally considered low blood pressure. Feb 19, · There is no set cutoff point for what doctors consider low blood pressure, and it may vary from person to person. The NHLBI consider blood pressure to be low when it is under 90/60 mm Hg.
Low blood pressure might seem desirable, and for some people, it causes no problems. However, for many people, abnormally low blood pressure hypotension can cause dizziness and fainting. In severe cases, low blood pressure can be life-threatening. A blood pressure reading lower than 90 millimeters of mercury mm Hg for the top number systolic or 60 mm Hg for the bottom number diastolic is generally considered low blood pressure.
The causes of low blood pressure can range from dehydration to serious medical disorders. It's important to find out what's causing your low blood pressure so that it can be treated. For some people, low blood pressure signals an underlying problem, especially when it drops suddenly or is accompanied by signs and symptoms such as:.
If you have consistently low blood pressure readings but feel fine, your doctor will likely just monitor you during routine exams.
Even occasional dizziness or lightheadedness may be a relatively minor problem — the result of mild dehydration from too much time in the sun or a hot tub, for example. Still, it's important to see your doctor if you have signs or symptoms of low blood pressure because they can point to more-serious problems. It can be helpful to keep a record of your symptoms, when they occur and what you're doing at the time.
Blood pressure is a measurement of the pressure in your arteries during the active and resting phases of each heartbeat. What's considered low blood pressure for you may be normal for someone else. Most doctors consider blood pressure too low only if it causes symptoms.
Some experts define low blood pressure as readings lower than 90 mm Hg systolic or 60 mm Hg diastolic. If either number is below that, your pressure is lower than normal.
A sudden fall in blood pressure can be dangerous. A change of just 20 mm Hg — a drop from systolic to 90 mm Hg systolic, for example — can cause dizziness and fainting when the brain fails to receive enough blood. And big drops, such as those caused by uncontrolled bleeding, severe infections or allergic reactions, can be life-threatening. Doctors often break down low blood pressure hypotension into categories, depending on the causes and other factors.
Some types of low blood pressure include:. Low blood pressure on standing up orthostatic or postural hypotension. This is a sudden drop in blood pressure when you stand up from a sitting position or after lying down. Gravity causes blood to pool in your legs when you stand. Ordinarily, your body compensates by increasing your heart rate and constricting blood vessels, thereby ensuring that enough blood returns to your brain.
But in people with orthostatic hypotension, this compensating mechanism fails and blood pressure falls, leading to dizziness, lightheadedness, blurred vision and even fainting. Orthostatic hypotension can occur for various reasons, including dehydration, prolonged bed rest, pregnancy, diabetes, heart problems, burns, excessive heat, large varicose veins and certain neurological disorders.
A number of medications also can cause orthostatic hypotension, particularly drugs used to treat high blood pressure — diuretics, beta blockers, calcium channel blockers and angiotensin-converting enzyme ACE inhibitors — as well as antidepressants and drugs used to treat Parkinson's disease and erectile dysfunction. Orthostatic hypotension is especially common in older adults, but it also affects young, otherwise healthy people who stand up suddenly after sitting with their legs crossed for long periods or after squatting for a time.
Low blood pressure after eating postprandial hypotension. This drop in blood pressure occurs one to two hours after eating and affects mostly older adults. Blood flows to your digestive tract after you eat.
Ordinarily, your body increases your heart rate and constricts certain blood vessels to help maintain normal blood pressure. But in some people these mechanisms fail, leading to dizziness, faintness and falls. Postprandial hypotension is more likely to affect people with high blood pressure or autonomic nervous system disorders such as Parkinson's disease. Eating small, low-carbohydrate meals; drinking more water; and avoiding alcohol might help reduce symptoms.
Low blood pressure hypotension can occur in anyone, though certain types of low blood pressure are more common depending on your age or other factors:. Even moderate forms of low blood pressure can cause dizziness, weakness, fainting and a risk of injury from falls.
And severely low blood pressure can deprive your body of enough oxygen to carry out its functions, leading to damage to your heart and brain. Mayo Clinic does not endorse companies or products.
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This content does not have an English version. This content does not have an Arabic version. Overview Low blood pressure might seem desirable, and for some people, it causes no problems. Request an Appointment at Mayo Clinic. Share on: Facebook Twitter. Show references Low blood pressure. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Accessed Feb. Understanding blood pressure readings. American Heart Association.
Orthostatic hypotension. Mayo Clinic; Office of patient education: Management of orthostatic hypotension. Low blood pressure: When blood pressure is too low. Merck Manuals Professional Version. Kaufmann, H. Treatment of orthostatic and postprandial hypotension. Related Tilt table test. Mayo Clinic Marketplace Check out these best-sellers and special offers on books and newsletters from Mayo Clinic.