Whenever you visit a doctor for a check-up, she/he will insist on measuring your blood pressure. This is because your blood pressure is instrumental to your health. Normal blood pressure means you are mostly healthy. High or low pressure could be the harbinger of a plethora of ailments.
What is blood pressure?
The blood flowing through your arteries exerts pressure on their walls. This is essentially your blood pressure. A blood pressure reading has two numbers- a higher and a lower. When the heart contracts to pump out blood, it is called systolic pressure. It is the higher number as this is when pressure is the highest. Alternatively, the heart relaxes. This is when your blood pressuring reading registers the lower number, called the diastolic pressure.
What is a normal blood pressure reading?
Across the world reading of 120/80 mmHg is considered a healthy blood pressure reading, 120 mmHg being the systolic and 80 mmHg the diastolic numbers. Despite this being the universal standard, blood pressure changes from one country to another.
In India, normal BP is 130/80. 130-139/80-89 is branded the high normal. 110/75 is normal low blood pressure. If your blood pressure hovers within this margin, you are healthy.
What factors does normal blood pressure depend on?
Another reason why there cannot be a fixed normal blood pressure is that a number of factors influence BP.
The age of the person- blood pressure increases with age
The climate- blood pressure is higher during the colder months than in summer
Gender- men have an overall higher blood pressure than women
Illness- blood pressure is generally lower when you are sick
Stress levels- different people react differently to stress levels. The more anxious a person is, the higher the level of blood pressure.
Your blood pressure fluctuates slightly all throughout the day. It is the lowest when you are asleep. It keeps rising throughout the day and reaches its peak mid-afternoon.
If you want to know what your normal blood pressure is, do consult with a doctor. You can also monitor your own BP round the clock for a better understanding of how and why blood pressure cannot be a constant.