Low blood pressure might seem desirable, and for some people, it causes no problems. However, for many people, abnormally low blood pressure (hypotension) can cause dizziness and fainting. In severe cases, low blood pressure can be life-threatening.
A blood pressure reading lower than 90 millimeters of mercury (mm Hg) for the top number (systolic) or 60 mm Hg for the bottom number (diastolic) is generally considered low blood pressure.
The causes of low blood pressure can range from dehydration to serious medical disorders. It's important to find out what's causing low blood pressure so that it can be treated.
For some people, low blood pressure signals an underlying problem, especially when it drops suddenly or is accompanied by signs and symptoms such as:
Extreme hypotension can result in this life-threatening condition. Signs and symptoms include:
Blood pressure is a measurement of the pressure in your arteries during the active and resting phases of each heartbeat.
Current guidelines identify normal blood pressure as lower than 120/80 mm Hg.
Blood pressure varies throughout the day, depending on:
Blood pressure is usually lowest at night and rises sharply on waking.
What's considered low blood pressure for you may be normal for someone else. Most doctors consider blood pressure too low only if it causes symptoms.
Some experts define low blood pressure as readings lower than 90 mm Hg systolic or 60 mm Hg diastolic. If either number is below that, your pressure is lower than normal.
A sudden fall in blood pressure can be dangerous. A change of just 20 mm Hg — a drop from 110 systolic to 90 mm Hg systolic, for example — can cause dizziness and fainting when the brain fails to receive enough blood. And big drops, such as those caused by uncontrolled bleeding, severe infections or allergic reactions, can be life-threatening.
Medical conditions that can cause low blood pressure include:
Some medications can cause low blood pressure, including:
Doctors often break down low blood pressure (hypotension) into categories, depending on the causes and other factors. Some types of low blood pressure include:
Low blood pressure on standing up (orthostatic or postural) hypotension). This is a sudden drop in blood pressure when you stand up from a sitting position or after lying down.
Gravity causes blood to pool in your legs when you stand. Ordinarily, your body compensates by increasing your heart rate and constricting blood vessels, thereby ensuring that enough blood returns to your brain.
But in people with orthostatic hypotension, this compensating mechanism fails and blood pressure falls, leading to dizziness, lightheadedness, blurred vision and even fainting.
Orthostatic hypotension can occur for various reasons, including dehydration, prolonged bed rest, pregnancy, diabetes, heart problems, burns, excessive heat, large varicose veins and certain neurological disorders.
A number of medications also can cause orthostatic hypotension, particularly drugs used to treat high blood pressure — diuretics, beta blockers, calcium channel blockers and angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors — as well as antidepressants and drugs used to treat Parkinson's disease and erectile dysfunction.
Orthostatic hypotension is especially common in older adults, but it also affects young, otherwise healthy people who stand up suddenly after sitting with their legs crossed for long periods or after squatting for a time.
Low blood pressure after eating (postprandial hypotension). This drop in blood pressure occurs one to two hours after eating and affects mostly older adults.
Blood flows to your digestive tract after you eat. Ordinarily, your body increases your heart rate and constricts certain blood vessels to help maintain normal blood pressure. But in some people these mechanisms fail, leading to dizziness, faintness and falls.
Postprandial hypotension is more likely to affect people with high blood pressure or autonomic nervous system disorders such as Parkinson's disease.
Eating small, low-carbohydrate meals; drinking more water; and avoiding alcohol might help reduce symptoms.
Low blood pressure (hypotension) can occur in anyone, though certain types of low blood pressure are more common depending on your age or other factors:
Even moderate forms of low blood pressure can cause dizziness, weakness, fainting and a risk of injury from falls.
And severely low blood pressure can deprive your body of enough oxygen to carry out its functions, leading to damage to your heart and brain.
Most people with low blood pressure do not need medications or other medical interventions to raise blood pressure. There are plenty of natural ways and lifestyle changes to raise low blood pressure, including the following lifestyle changes.
Eat more salt : Contrary to popular advice, low-sodium diets are not good for everyone with blood pressure problems.
People with low blood pressure should consider increasing their sodium intake moderately to help raise blood pressure.
Avoid alcoholic beverages : Alcohol can lower blood pressure further, so people with low blood pressure should avoid drinking excessive amounts of alcohol.
Cross legs while sitting : Crossing the legs while sitting has been shown to increase blood pressure. For people with high blood pressure, this can be a problem.
For people with low blood pressure symptoms, crossed legs may help increase blood pressure with minimal effort.
Drink water : Drinking more water can help increase blood volume, which can aleviate one of the potential causes of low blood pressure. It can also help avoid dehydration.
Eat small meals frequently : Eating smaller, more frequent meals throughout the day may help with low blood pressure.
This is because the smaller meals help prevent a drop in a blood pressure associated with eating larger, heavier meals.e.t.c
Gelsemium and Viscum Album: These are effective homeopathic medicines for low blood pressure patients and mostly prescribed to patients who are accompanied by extreme vertigo and nausea. Sometimes the patients also suffer from a constant dull aching head and feelings of stress. The pulse is usually slow and weak, causing persistent fatigue.
Glonoine and Natrum Mur: Effective Homeopathic remedies help to maintain low blood pressure when it unexpectedly falls due to prolonged sun exposure. Heavy headedness, vertigo, nausea, fainting spells are common in such cases.
Carbo veg and China: They are highly potent homeopathic medicines in case of an abnormal fall in blood pressure caused by severe diarrhoea and dehydration. The body has marked signs of exhaustion and the pulse is so weak that it is often imperceptible.
China and Ferrum Met: This homeopathic medicine is prescribed when the blood pressure falls due to heavy blood loss. Irregular, feeble purse, anaemia, exhaustion are common symptoms occurring from blood loss due to hemorrhage.e.t.c