In talking about your heart health, blood pressure ranges can determine how you intervene in high blood pressure, or if you even have a need to intervene. Let’s take a look at the guidelines for hypertension and healthy blood pressure.
On average normal, textbook blood pressure is considered 120/80. You may have blood pressure at or near this measurement and be considered to have healthy blood pressure. Below this may be okay, but if it gets too low there can be dangers.
However, low blood pressure is less of a concern for the overall population because more people suffer from hypertension and is a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke. But there are different levels of high blood pressure.
If your blood pressure is up to 139/89 you have what’s known as pre-hypertension. You don’t have high blood pressure yet, but if you let it go it could become too high. It is very important to watch your lifestyle and adopt healthy habits that will help you to keep your heart strong.
From 140/90, to 159/99 is considered stage 1 hypertension. At this point your doctor will usually have you work on changing your lifestyle and then recheck in a few months. If, after a few months of working on lifestyle factors, it does not go down you may need to consider medication.
If your blood pressure is over 160/100, you may need to take more drastic measures. This could require one or more medications in order to lower the pressure. Your health care provider will still talk with you about lifestyle changes, though, to make sure you get all the benefits you can.
These blood pressure ranges are pretty standard, but you should talk to your doctor about your specific blood pressure and what it means. You may just need to change some habits or you may need to take a prescription.
If you go on blood pressure medications, it’s still possible that you could lose weight and eat a low sodium diet and eventually get off of medication or at least reduce your dependence on it. You will need to keep monitoring your blood pressure on your own and working with your doctor to develop a plan to improve your heart health.
Having one episode of high blood pressure doesn’t mean that you need to get treated for it. If you have a high reading once, keep monitoring it and see if it continues to stay high or if it was just a fluke.
There are times your blood pressure can go up when you’re nervous or stressed, but return to normal the rest of the time. Knowing about blood pressure ranges and monitoring your own pressures will help you to be an active participant in your own healthcare.