Low blood pressure can pose a sign of health risk, so being aware of causes and symptoms. Learn more about it. Click To Tweet
Blood pressure can be a good indicator of your health; establishing if you have low blood pressure allows you to take the appropriate steps to adapt your lifestyle and receive treatment—if needed—to manage your blood pressure, reducing the posing threat to your health.
In this blog, you will find all about low blood pressure (hypotension), especially its symptoms and what to do if you or someone you care for has low blood pressure. However, be aware that everyone is different, and low blood pressure can range in its threat to health, based on the cause and other paralleled health issues.
Low blood pressure: what is it?
Low blood pressure is generally considered a blood pressure reading lower than 90 millimetres of mercury (mmHg) for the top number (systolic blood pressure) or 60 mmHg for the bottom number (diastolic blood pressure).
What’s considered low blood pressure for one person might be OK for someone else. If your blood pressure is naturally low, it probably won’t cause problems and won’t require treatment. The lower your blood pressure, the lower your heart disease and stroke risk.
However, for those that develop low blood pressure, later on, it might cause no noticeable symptoms or cause dizziness and fainting. Sometimes, low blood pressure can be life-threatening.
Symptoms of low blood pressure
Get your blood pressure checked if you keep getting symptoms like
- Lightheadedness or dizziness
- Feeling sick
- Blurred vision
- Generally feeling weak
Low blood pressure can indicate a variety of health concerns ranging in their severity and threat to health, so being aware of symptoms in yourself or those you care for. For example, the elderly is beneficial to keep track of their standard of help to be able to assist them in the best way possible and provide clarity to trained health care professionals.
Extreme low blood pressure can lead to a condition known as shock. Symptoms of shock include:
- Confusion, especially in older people
- Cold, clammy skin
- Decrease in skin colouration (pallor)
- Rapid, shallow breathing
- Weak and rapid pulse
If your low blood pressure symptoms occur alongside changes in your posture, such as going from sitting or lying down to standing up. This is called postural hypotension or orthostatic hypotension. It’s caused by changes to your arteries as you get older and if you’re taking medications to lower your blood pressure.
You might feel the symptoms listed above when you stand up, such as feeling dizzy or faint. They will pass quickly as your body adjusts but can put you at risk of falls.
Also, if you only show some of the above symptoms, it can be indications that you’re susceptible to getting low blood pressure or other similar health concerns. So do not hast; it is better to receive an earlier diagnosis from a trained healthcare professional to adopt the correct behaviours and implement treatment to improve the condition.
However, although the initial symptoms indicate low blood pressure, they can indicate other health concerns that require medical attention. So in speaking with your doctor, you can learn how to accommodate.
Causes of low blood pressure
As mentioned prior, some people naturally have low blood pressure without specific causes or reasons as to why. It can result from a healthy lifestyle and being fit and active, with your genes playing a role. Blood pressure varies throughout the day. For example, it might drop when you’ve just eaten while your blood is carried to your gut, if you’ve been standing up for a long time, if you’re dehydrated, and if the temperature is warm. However, there are instances where your blood pressure often drops, such as:
- Taking certain medications
- Health problems, including: diabetes, heart problems, anaemia, and neurological conditions (conditions which affect the nervous system).
Treatment of low blood pressure
Low blood pressure without symptoms or with only mild symptoms rarely requires treatment. However, if low blood pressure causes symptoms, the treatment depends on the cause.
Healthy lifestyle choices through exercise and eating habits are beneficial. Some suggestions include:
- Use more salt
- Drink more water
- Wear compression stockings
However, remember, before taking action, you should always discuss your options and receive a formal diagnosis from a qualified healthcare professional to suit the method to your lifestyle and condition.