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Blood Pressure Explained

Discussion in 'Diabetes Discussions' started by Adrian1995, Mar 23, 2022.

  1. Adrian1995

    Adrian1995 · Member

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    High blood pressure or hypertension, often referred to as the ‘silent killer’, is typically asymptomatic – meaning no symptoms are shown. Some people with high blood pressure will experience symptoms, including chest pain, dizziness, headaches, shortness of breath, palpitations, and heart and nose bleeds. Most people however, will experience no symptoms as all – until the damage has been done which is often after several years of living with high blood pressure.

    The first step to preventing and managing high blood pressure is to understandhigh blood pressure, its causes, effects, and long-term consequences. If you already have high blood pressure, it is important to control and continuously monitor your blood pressure.

    Blood pressure is a measurement of the force of blood which pushes against the walls of the arteries. The arteries are the large blood vessels that carry blood from the heart muscle to all of the other organs and muscles inside the body. As the blood is transported around the body, it pushes against the inside of the artery walls. The force of this ‘push’ is what we measure as blood pressure. High blood pressure or hypertension is a medical condition in which the arteriesare persistently subjected to an elevated blood pressure. This increased pressure is caused by a rise in the force of blood pushing against the walls of the arteries.

    The increased pressure can be caused by the arteries becoming thicker orhardening due to the build-up of plaque. Thicker artery walls mean that there is less space for the blood to flow through the arteries. This thickening (or narrowing of the artery) results in abnormal blood flow whereby the blood pushes harder against the walls of the arteries. This raises the blood pressure.

    The higher the pressure, the greater the stress the arteries are under, and the more difficult it is for the heart to pump and deliver blood to the body. When blood pressure is high, this places stress on the body, which in turn can cause damage to the heart, kidneys, brain, and eyes.

    How Is Blood Pressure Measured?

    Blood pressure is expressed using two numbers - the systolic pressure (as the heart beats) over the diastolic pressure (as the heart relaxes). The normal systolic pressure is 120 mm Hg and the normal diastolic pressure is 80 mm Hg. Normal blood pressure is therefore written as 120 over 80, or 120/80. We will discuss how these numbers are determined in further depth in subsection 4 where we cover how blood pressure is tested.Your pulse pressure is the difference between the systolic pressure reading andthe diastolic pressure reading. Pulse pressure indicates the force that your heartmuscle generates each time it contracts. Therefore, provided your blood pressureis normal, that is 120/80 mm Hg, then your pulse pressure is 40 (120 - 80 = 40).

    When systolic blood pressure is equal to or greater than 140 mm Hg and/or the diastolic blood pressure is equal to or greater than 90 mm Hg, the blood pressure is considered to be high (140/90). If any one value (systolic or diastolic) is in one of the elevated blood pressure categories, the patient is considered to be in that specific ‘stage’ of high blood pressure.

    Your blood pressure goal should be 120/80, or even better, 115/75
     

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  2. Erin

    Erin Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    What is the role of the heart's pumping force in blood pressure? Does stress increase heart rate for example? And if so, would sedatives lower blood pressure by lowering heart rate or force?
     
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  3. Adrian1995

    Adrian1995 · Member

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    definitely stress increase heart rate, so i suggest to relax mind especially at morning and evening.
     
  4. zand

    zand Type 2 · Master

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    I had a critical BP event where my BP rose to 240/180. This was 14 years ago. 12 years on from that I was drug free again. Then I had covid and needed one low dose BP drug for over a year to keep BP down. It’s now 115/65 so I will be halving the tablet for a while with a view to giving it up again completely if my BG stays stable.
     
  5. Erin

    Erin Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the great medical lesson. :) So, as a student, I would ask if there are different types of hypertension: e.g. thickening of the arteries (atherosclerosis), age-related state of the arteries, elasticity of the arteries, and on the other hand causes for any of those physical conditions such as stress, hyperthyroidism, drug-induced changes in heart and vascular performance, and btw why is salt a bad thing for hypertension, and why is renal function a cause or precondition for hypertension? Sorry, for all the questions; you seem to be knowledgeable in this area. Tx for any info.
     
  6. TriciaWs

    TriciaWs Type 2 (in remission!) · Well-Known Member

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    There is also an issue with low blood pressure - rarely diagnosed or treated in the UK. I had a tilt table test to check why I faint and my BP dropped to 74/57 within a few minutes of standing up.
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
  7. Erin

    Erin Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    TriciaWS, I do worry about that for a relative of mine; on 3 antihypertensives. She is falling into two 3 hr. naps per day, and has very low activity, very sluggish. For her age, I think her "normal" bp may actually not be the best for her esp. as her other meds also cause low blood pressure. I suggested that she skip at least one antihypertensive one morning as a test, to see if she doesn't fall flat on the bed after taking only two. Other conditions should be examined too though.
     
  8. Robbity2

    Robbity2 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    So, @Adrian1995: my systolic levels tend to be on the high side but my diastolic levels don't normally reach anything near 80 - they're usually in the low 60s range ?
     
  9. Dr Snoddy

    Dr Snoddy Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    So, @Adrian1995, is there a specific reason why you have posted what appears to be a cut and paste from an article?
    'We will discuss how these numbers are measured in Subsection 4.....'
     
    • Agree Agree x 7
  10. Riva_Roxaban

    Riva_Roxaban Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    All of the OP's threads have been copy and paste articles. :meh:
     
    • Funny Funny x 1
  11. zand

    zand Type 2 · Master

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    As far as I can see the OP has only started one thread? This one.
     
  12. Dark Horse

    Dark Horse · Well-Known Member

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    • Informative Informative x 1
  13. Robbity2

    Robbity2 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    • Like Like x 1
  14. Tengo Lo

    Tengo Lo · Newbie

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    How are you feeling now?
    I might be of help, I have gone through the same situation
     
  15. EllieM

    EllieM Type 1 · Moderator
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    Would you like to share your experiences of this situation on the thread?
     
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  16. lorib64

    lorib64 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I had some genetic testing on food sensitivity. I am sensitive to sodium affecting my blood pressure. Not everyone is. I don’t know the mechanism,
     
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