Low Blood Pressure: Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment

Low blood pressure also known as hypotension is when the blood pressure is lower than the 90/60 average and the blood flow to the rest of the body organs is low and inadequate. Low blood pressure is not considered unhealthy unless there are other some other symptoms and signs accompanied with it. The symptoms may be mild like dizziness while standing or changing body positions and usually happens due to dehydration. However, it is a matter of concern when the blood pressure drops suddenly or is way too low. This article will tell you all about low blood pressure, its signs, causes, and its treatment along with how to raise it.

What is low blood pressure?

Hypotension, the medical term for low blood pressure refers to the blood pressure being lower than the normal 90/60. However, the readings differ for the people of different age, and body type. The blood pressure reading comprises of two readings. Out of the two, the first and the higher one shows systolic pressure, which is the pressure inside the blood arteries when heart fills them with blood. The other and the lower one shows diastolic pressure, which is the pressure in the arteries when the heart is taking a rest between two beats.

A blood pressure of less than 120/80 is considered ideal and optimal. However, when the pressure is below 90/60, it is considered as low.But, for the blood pressure to be considered lower than normal, the value of any one out the systolic or diastolic blood pressure can be lower than normal. For example, if one’s systolic pressure is 110 but the diastolic pressure is 50, the blood pressure it considered low. Low blood pressure isn’t considered unhealthy unless the person is too old, as it may mean that the vital organs aren’t getting enough blood. If low blood pressure is accompanied by some brief episodes of dizziness, fainting etc., it can be ignored and can be recoveredfrom without any treatment. But, if the symptoms are regular and the patient constantly feels dizzy, it is a matter of concern and needs to be treated immediately.

What causes low blood pressure?

The most common cause of low blood pressure usually includes various lifestyle choices. For example, If a person doesn’t drink enough water or doesn’t take enough nutrients in his/her diet, they can suffer from low blood pressure and might be advised some lifestyle changes for the same. However, if the blood pressure drops suddenly, it can be an issue. The major causes of low blood pressure are prolonged bed rest, pregnancy, a drop in the blood volume, heart problems, and endocrine problems, some sort of medications, allergy reactions, septic shock, and nutritional deficiencies. When a person is dehydrated, they feel weak, and dizzy which leads to a drop in the blood pressure. People on prolonged bed rest tend to have a lower blood pressure due to inactivity.

A person can also experience a sudden drop in the blood pressure if they have gone through some major trauma, leading to a lot of blood loss or internal bleeding, as a consequence. Low blood pressure is considered normal for people with low heart rate. However, if it drops a certain level, it is considered risky for them too. A certain number of medications suggested for heart problems also lead to low blood pressure. If the blood pressure drops too low, they are usually advised to change their medication. Low blood pressure due to a septic shock or allergic reaction is often life threatening and needs to be treated as soon as diagnosed. A deficiency of vitamin B-12, iron, and folic acid, which are the major cause of anemia, also cause low blood pressure. Iron deficiency is common amongst pregnant women, which is one of the prime causes of low blood pressure in them. The blood loss during labor also leads to low blood pressure in some cases.

The people who are athletic, fit, and maintain a healthy low-carbs diet also have lower blood pressure and slower heart rate as compared to other people. Here, low blood pressure isn’t a cause for concern among these individuals and is actually considered healthy. Non-smokers also have a lower blood pressure as compared to people who smoke.

What is too low blood pressure?

Chronically low blood pressure is considered too low only when it causes some other signs and symptoms to show. A blood pressure lower than 90/60 is considered as low blood pressure. If there is a sudden drop in the blood pressure, it is considered dangerous. For example, if the systolic pressure goes from 110 to 90 all of a sudden, it can lead to dizziness, and nausea as the brain does not receive anadequate supply of blood all of a sudden. Low blood pressure, however, is considered when life threatening when caused by uncontrolled bleeding, allergic reactions or infections. Some diseases like heart problems, Parkinson’s disease, and parathyroid disease also see low blood pressure as a problem. Here, change in medication is usually advised to regulate the blood pressure levels. Low blood pressure is also a sign of serious disorder in some cases when the patient has a heart problem, otherwise, it isn’t considered unhealthy at all.

How to raise low blood pressure?

Low blood pressure, if not accompanied by other symptoms, is rarely a matter of concern. In the case of symptoms, the treatment of the same differs depending on the underlying cause and therefore, cannot be fixed. Signs of nausea, dizziness, dehydration, lack of concentration, blurred vision, and fatigue are a cause of concern for people with low blood pressure. It may indicate towards a deeper problem related to the same. The cause of concern increases when a person experiences depression, rapid and shallow breath, and has a paler skin as compared to other people. Here, a diagnosis needs to be performed on the individual where the underlying cause for the same can be discovered and an appropriate treatment can be given for the same. Many-a-times, low blood pressure is caused by medications, and hence, it is advised to change them, or stop taking them altogether. But, all of this needs to be done under a doctor’s advice only.

In case it is difficult to understand the underlying cause of the low blood pressure and one needs to increase it, they can try increasing the amount of salt in their diet. Doctors usually advise limiting the salt in one’s diet as the sodium increases the blood pressure which may later lead to heart failure. But, if you have a low blood pressure, increasing the amount of salt in your diet can help a lot. Apart from this, drinking more water prevents dehydration and increases the flow of fluids in your body which increases the blood pressure. Wearing compression stockings, the ones that help with varicose veins also increase the blood pressure around your legs. In case the condition requires medication, doctors usually suggest drugs like fludrocortisone and midodrine to increase the blood pressure. Both of these drugs are used to combat orthostatic hypotension, which is low blood pressure associated with changing body positions or standing up. Fludrocortisone raises one’s blood volume, and midodrine restricts the ability of the blood vessels to expand, which resultantly increase the blood pressure.

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is also a key to gain normal blood pressure levels. Following a healthy diet, regular exercising, and eating small and low-carb meals regulate the blood pressure. Caffeine is also said to increase the blood pressure levels, but one is advised to take caffeinated coffee or tea on doctor’s advice only. If changing body positions give one dizziness due to low blood pressure, the position should be changed slowly. For example, deep breathing while changing a body position like getting up from bed or sitting after standing for long hours regulates the blood pressure levels.

Matt Bailey is a noted writer, content marketer and Social Strategist at FindatopDoc.com. Find a best Local Doctor by Specialty and Insurance.

 

Image courtesy of [jscreationzs] at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Related Posts

Leave a Comment

Loading...