What Is Low Blood Pressure (Hypotension)?
Low blood pressure is also known as hypotension. For some people, that is chronic and usually not a cause for concern. However, for others, who get higher blood pressure readings or even normal ones, a sudden drop can lead to dizziness or other symptoms.
A person with a blood pressure reading of 90/60 or lower has hypotension. For normal healthy people, low blood pressure does not need treatment. But for ailing or older people it is a symptom of some other ailment developing inside. A fall in the blood pressure signifies that the brain, heart or other vital organs are not getting sufficient blood supply.
How Do You Get Low Blood Pressure
This condition is caused when the nervous system or the cardiovascular system does not react properly to a change. For instance, when you stand up from a sitting position at that time a few blood pools in the legs. This can cause your blood pressure to fall. But for normal people, the body sends a message to the heart to beat faster and the blood vessels to constrict. This counterbalances the blood pressure fall.
But when the physiological system is unable to do so your blood pressure falls and you faint. With age people are at a greater risk of developing high or low blood pressure. This happens because the body is aging and also owing to the building if plaque in the blood vessels. Surveys show that approximately 20% people above the age of 65 experience postural hypotension.
Causes of Low Blood Pressure or Hypotension
The reasons for lower blood pressure are not always known. However, check out this list of possible reasons for the same
- Low blood sugar or hypothyroidism often leads to a drop in the pressure
- Pregnant women can experience this owing to a number of reasons
- As an effect of over-the-counter medicines
- Side-effects of medicines administered for Parkinson’s disease, depression, etc
- The abnormal rhythm of the heart
- Heart failure
- Liver ailment
- Widening of the blood vessels
- Heat stroke
Apart from these reasons postural hypotension can occur due to excessive menstrual bleeding, electrolyte loss or dehydration. Aged men and women can also get low blood pressure due to an ill-health condition.
Other reasons for postural hypotension include some diseases like the following:
- Cardiovascular diseases
- Nerve problems
- Disorders of the nervous system
- Nutritional diseases
Why Does the Blood Pressure Drops?
A drop in the blood pressure can be due to a number of reasons such as:
- Blood loss
- A high or low temperature
- Heart failure
- Blood infection
- Dehydration from fever, diarrhea or vomiting
- Medication reaction
- Allergic reaction
Symptoms of Low Blood Pressure
There are many symptoms of low blood pressure which are possible even when the pressure drops suddenly.
- Blurred vision
- Lack of concentration
In people of older ages, it can lead to shallow and rapid breathing, pale and cold skin, rapid and weak pulse, and confusion.
How low can your blood go?
Normal blood pressure is measured at 120/90 mm Hg but if it falls by even 20mm HG to say 90mm HG you are likely to experience dizziness and nausea. If the upper limit falls to 90 and the lower limit to 60 mm HG then it is considered that you are suffering from low blood pressure. Blood pressure can drop hugely if there is any bleeding, excessive infection or allergy then blood pressure can drop hugely and pose a serious danger to life.
Consistent low blood pressure is not a cause of concern for any age group. However, if you have any of the above symptoms it might indicate the presence of some primary disease that has not revealed itself. A consultation with a doctor at this stage can be of immense help in understanding the reason behind the condition.