What is blood pressure and how to measure it ?

What is blood pressure and how to measure it ?

Normal blood pressure plays a very vital role for living a healthy life. The heart acts like a pumping device which creates pressure to the blood and thus blood flows through the circulatory system, organs and tissues of the body.  If blood will not flow  into the circulatory system, no oxygen or nutrients would be delivered through our arteries to the tissues and organs.

As Blood moves around the circulatory system it creates pressure on the walls of vessels.

Blood Pressure readings are made up of two values.

Note : Blood pressure imbalance is very dangerous. Not even high nor even low is good.

Also Read : 21 Things Your Body Can Tell You About Your Health

Systolic Blood Pressure  :

  • When the heart beats, the heart muscles contracts (squeezes)  and pushes oxygen-rich blood through the arteries into the blood vessel. This force creates pressure on those blood vessels, and that’s your systolic blood pressure.
  • A normal systolic pressure is below 120.
  • A reading of 120-129 is considered as elevated blood pressure.
  • 130-139 is stage 1 high blood pressure (also called hypertension).
  • 140 or more is stage 2 hypertension.
  • 180 or more is a hypertensive crisis. It is severe case; Immediately contact nearby Doctors.

Diastolic blood pressure  :

  • It is the pressure on the blood vessels when the heart  beats relaxes.  The bottom number / reading is the diastolic number.
  • A normal diastolic blood pressure is lower than 80. But even if your diastolic number is lower than 80, you can have elevated blood pressure if the systolic reading is 120-129.
  • 80-89 is stage 1 hypertension.
  • 90 or more is stage 2 hypertension.
  • 120 or more is a hypertensive crisis ; Immediately contact nearby Doctors.

Blood pressure is measured in units of millimeters of mercury (mmHg). The readings are always given in pairs, with the upper (systolic) value first, followed by the lower (diastolic) value.

Also Read : 8 Top Rich-Protein Foods to Eat

Blood Pressure Chart

Suppose someone  has a reading of 140/90 mmHg (often spoken “140 over 90”) has a

  • systolic blood pressure of 140 mmHg, and a
  • diastolic blood pressure of 90 mmHg.
A normal blood pressure / Ideal Blood pressure should be 120/80.

For adults, 140/90 is considered as a common (normal) blood pressure.

If You are measuring your blood pressure try to measure it on both hand. Sometimes the reading varies in both hands. In either side the reading having higher value is considered as higher side value. In the medical language high blood pressure is termed as hypertension. 

High Blood Pressure(Hypertension) Risk:  (> 140/90) (systolic over 140 mmHg and/or diastolic over 90 mmHg)

  • Heart Attacks
  • Strokes
  • Heart & Kidney Failure
  • Aneurysm (High blood pressure weakens the blood vessel creates bulge, if it ruptures can be life threatening)
  • Brain Hemorrhage
  • Metabolism Disorderness
  • Retina Damage
  • Sexual dysfunction

So  it’s important to have your blood pressure checked regularly. If the readings are repeatedly too high, there are several different ways of lowering your blood pressure and decreasing the risk of long-term health consequences.

Low Blood Pressure (Hypotension)  Risk:  (> 140/90) (systolic over 140 mmHg and/or diastolic over 90 mmHg)

  • Blurred Vision, especially in older people
  • Cold, clammy, pale skin
  • Rapid, shallow breathing
  • Weak and rapid pulse
  • Depression
  • Dizziness

How is blood pressure measured?

You can measure blood pressure frequently at your home only. While measuring Blood pressure if fluctuation seems more consult your nearby Doctors. Blood pressure varies during the course of the day. If varies along with your physical condition as : stress, pain, summer cold many others. But this kind of increase in blood pressure is only temporary and it soon returns to normal.


So, if blood pressure is measured just once and found to be high, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s always too high. A blood pressure reading taken at the doctor’s office can also be misleading: Going to the doctor makes some people so nervous that their blood pressure goes up.

So to get reliable readings, blood pressure is measured on several different days and while you are resting. This means sitting down and relaxing on a chair, and waiting about three minutes before taking a measurement so that your circulatory system comes to rest. The upper arm that is being used for the measurement should rest on a table, at about the same height as the heart, while the reading is being done.

You can measure your blood pressure on your own using a digital blood pressure monitor for automated readings or an instrument called a sphygmomanometer for manual readings.

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