Human blood pressure (BP) is an indicator of the force with which blood pushes against the artery wall.
This important parameter depends on the volume of blood that pumps the heart per unit of time and resistance of the vascular wall. Measured in millimeters of mercury.
What do the upper and lower digits mean
When measuring, the tonometer shows two numbers, for example, 120 and 80. Here are what these numbers mean:
- Upper – the greatest (systolic) is determined at the time when the heart contracts. Reflects the force of contraction of the heart muscle, the number of contractions per unit of time and the resistance of vascular walls.
- Lower – the smallest (diastolic) is determined at the time when the heart relaxes. Reflects the force of resistance of peripheral vessels.
With each beat of the heart, a pressure fluctuation occurs between the smallest and greatest.
Valid is the interval from 100/60 to 130/90. There is the concept of working pressure – the individual norm of blood pressure, which depends on the physiological characteristics of the organism and age.
For example, some people may have a constant 100/60 with good health. For them, the numbers 120/80 will mean increased blood pressure, although for others it is the norm.
The normal difference between the upper and lower pressure should be 35-50 mm Hg.
Classification by category for persons over the age of 18:
If the indicators of upper and lower blood pressure fall into different categories, then a higher figure is taken into account when assessing the severity of hypertension.
Norm by age
The magnitude of the pressure level depends on the age: in children and adolescents the rate is lower, in the elderly and the elderly – higher.
With age, the vessels become less elastic, lipid and lime deposits appear on their inner shell. Age-related changes also occur in the heart. All this leads to the fact that the elderly mean pressure values are higher than those of the young.
However, even after the age of 60, figures should not go beyond 130/90.
Fluctuations in blood pressure
The amount of pressure can vary during the day, with excessive fluid intake, physical exertion, fatigue, stress, taking certain medications and other factors.
Daily fluctuations in blood pressure:
- The lowest – at night from 2-00 to 4-00
- High enough – in the morning within 2 – 4 hours after waking up
- The highest – in the evening
In healthy people, such changes do not exceed 20 mm Hg for systolic, 10 mm Hg for diastolic, they are more pronounced for hypertensive patients.
People with hypertension need to measure blood pressure every day, 2 times a day – in the morning and in the evening, write down the testimony in a diary.
Danger of deviation from the norm
The WHO (World Health Organization) warns that with frequent and long abnormalities, the following diseases develop:
- above 140/90 – hypertension
- below 90/60 – hypotension
These conditions require a visit to a doctor. Especially dangerous is hypertension.
With hypertension, the risk of ischemic and hemorrhagic strokes, myocardial infarction, ischemic heart disease, cardiac and renal failure, retinal damage, and eye diseases increases. Aneurysms (dilations) may appear in the vessels, and in the saddest cases – complete blockages and ruptures, hemorrhages.
With the help of lifestyle changes (limiting animal fats, salt, physical activity) and drug treatment, complications of cardiovascular diseases can be avoided.
Most people may not feel the pressure deviation from the norm.
Sometimes with hypertension, the following symptoms occur:
- Headache, often throbbing in the occipital region
- Chest pain in the heart area
- Noise in ears
- Visual impairment, flashing flies before your eyes
For hypotension, you may have:
- Weakness and lethargy
- Nausea and vomiting
- Darkening of the eyes when rising from bed