Low Blood Pressure: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment
Low blood pressure, also known as hypotension, occurs when the blood pressure in the arteries is abnormally low, leading to symptoms such as dizziness, blurred vision, heart palpitations, and general weakness. While slightly low blood pressure is normal at times, chronic low blood pressure may be an indication of underlying health conditions. In this article, we will discuss the causes, symptoms, and treatment of low blood pressure.
What is Low Blood Pressure?
Blood pressure is the force of blood on the walls of the arteries as the blood flows through them. Normal blood pressure is generally depicted between 90/60 and 140/90. If your blood pressure reading is under the 90/60 rating, then it is usually regarded as having low blood pressure. Chronic low blood pressure may be an indication of heart problems, endocrine (hormonal) problems, lack of nutrients, and other health conditions. Low blood pressure can prevent enough oxygen from being delivered to all parts of the body.
Causes of Low Blood Pressure
There is no single cause for low blood pressure. Rather, the causes behind low blood pressure vary, starting from lifestyle choices to underlying health conditions or even a side effect from medications taken. Situations that can affect blood pressure include stress levels, posture, temperature, and even exercise. Additionally, low blood pressure can also be hereditary.
Medical Conditions that may lead to low blood pressure include dehydration, heart conditions, anemia, neurological disorders, serious injuries, and shock. Certain medications such as those for heart problems, high blood pressure, diuretics, and antidepressants can also lead to low blood pressure.
Symptoms of Low Blood Pressure
The symptoms of low blood pressure include dizziness, blurred vision, heart palpitations, and general weakness. In severe cases, low blood pressure can lead to fainting, nausea, and rapid, shallow breathing.
Treatment of Low Blood Pressure
If you experience symptoms of low blood pressure, there are several things you can do to alleviate them. First, stand up gradually, avoid standing for long periods of time, limit alcohol intake, refrain from caffeine at night, and eat small portions of food throughout the day. Staying hydrated is also important since dehydration causes low blood pressure. Increasing fluid and salt intake can help to increase blood volume, thereby reducing the chances of low blood pressure.
If the low blood pressure is due to underlying health conditions or medications, treating these issues will help alleviate the symptoms. Medications that increase blood pressure by either expanding blood volume or making arteries narrower may be necessary in severe cases. However, medication should always be confirmed and checked first by a doctor before taking them.
In conclusion, low blood pressure can be caused by a variety of factors and can lead to symptoms such as dizziness, blurred vision, heart palpitations, and general weakness. It is crucial to stay hydrated and keep salt and fluid intake adequate to avoid dehydration which causes low blood pressure. Consulting a doctor and getting a diagnosis for underlying medical conditions is crucial to find the right treatment for low blood pressure.