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Understanding and Managing Hypotension (Low Blood Pressure)

Pia VermaakPia Vermaak  June 26, 2024

Low blood pressure, Hypotension occurs in 5% of individuals aged 50 and 30% in individuals aged 70 and above. We will review and break down hypotension (the sudden drop of blood pressure) and low diolistic blood pressure. Let’s see what goes into identifying, managing, overseeing, and understanding hypotension.

Understanding What Low Blood Pressure (Hypotension) is

Hypotension (low blood pressure) is determined when there is a low force of blood pressure in the arteries, meaning there is too little blood being pumped through your veins.

Its good to note that what reads as a low pressure for one person can be an acceptable level for another but generalized, it is a reading below 90/60 mm Hg. is considered low blood pressure.

Taking a look at the units of measurement often written as “mm Hg” which stands for milliliters and mercury. The first numbers before the slash indicate the systolic pressure and the second is the diolistic blood pressure.

So if the individual has a reading of 90/60 mm Hg (read ninety over sixty), it will be:

Systolic blood pressure = 90 mm Hg

Diolistic blood pressure = 60 mm Hg

Systolic blood pressure is measured by the force of blood that is push through when the heart takes a beat. This number will always be higher than the diolistic reading as this level measures the pressure of blood being pumped when the heart rests in between and its’ muscle relax.

Types of Hypotension

hypotension types

Orthostatic Hypotension

Orthostatic hypotension is common and can cause dizziness accompanied by fainting following standing up after sitting or laying down for a period of time. These episodes of lightheadedness can be mild and go away within a few minutes, and there may be periods that this does not happen. However, prolonged orthostatic hypotension can lead to more serious health risks. This form of low blood pressure is treatable and often caused by an obvious reason, such as dehydration.

Intracranial Hypotension

Intracranial hypotension occurs in the absence or discretion of cerebrospinal fluid in the skull. This fluid, also known as CSF, is essential to the brain as it helps feed it nutrients, cushions it from impact, and eliminates brain waste. A cerebrospinal fluid leak often causes this type of hypotension and often happens after lumbar punctures. The brain will drop if there is too little liquid inside the skull, which can cause headaches and other neurological symptoms. Conservative treatments often include a higher caffeine intake, rest, and painkillers, and these symptoms can also clear up on their own. For more serious cases, doctors will recommend an epidural blood patch.

Postprandial Hypotension 

Postprandial refers to the period after an individual has eaten. Postprandial hypotension is often seen in the elderly or can be caused by a pre-existing illness such as diabetes. This causes symptoms such as lightheadedness and loss of balance, resulting in falls. This condition is easily diagnosed, and treatment leans heavily toward lifestyle changes.

Neurally Mediated Hypotension

This form of low blood pressure causes blood to collect in the legs and lower parts of the body when standing. This is from an unwarranted reflex between the brain and heart despite both organs being normal. Some may also refer to it as “fainting reflex” as it causes dizziness, lower pain tolerance, fainting (syncope), chest pain and momentary visual disruption. The blood pooling occurs because this reflex interferes with blood pressure regulation. This condition is manageable with lifestyle changes such as:

  1. Consuming more salt and fluids,
  2. avoiding alcohol, high heat, dehydration,
  3. standing for long periods of time.

Causes and Symptoms of Low Blood Pressure

low diolistic blood pressure

Common Causes

  • Dehydration
  • Heart problems
  • Endocrine issues
  • Emotional stress
  • Donating blood
  • Pregnancy
  • Certain medications
  • Diuretics (loss of fluid)
  • Blood loss
  • Anti-depressants
  • Internal bleeding (ulcers)
  • Some allergic reactions
  • Nervous system disorders (Parkinson’s disease)
  • Addison’s disease (insufficient blood pressure maintaining hormones)
  • Prolonged bed rest

Blood infections

Symptoms

  • Dizziness
  • Fainting
  • Blurred vision
  • Nausea
  • Loss of balance
  • Falling
  • Muscle weakness
  • Fatigue
  • Headaches
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Damp or clammy skin

Specific Situations Involving Low Blood Pressure

Low Blood Pressure and High Heart Rate

This can be either a normal occurrence or a serious cause for alarm! Simple actions such as standing up can cause these side effects – the blood rushes to the lower body when upright but soon regulates itself again. More serious conditions are that the circuitry of the heart not properly functioning making the harmony between the bottom and top chambers out of sync.

Possible underlying conditions

  • Heart valve disease – When disease has occured in the heart velve and the blood can not be pumped effectively, your rhythm can become out of sync resulting in oxygenated blood not reaching your entire body. These diseases cause hypotension as the blood force against artery walls are weakened.
  • Anemia – the body tries to make up for the lack of oxygen in the body by overworking the lungs. This opens up the arteries, which lowers the pressure through which blood travels through, causing hypotension.
  • Central nervous system disease – injuries or diseases linked to the nervous system and spinal cords can cause hypotension. This is due to possible low levels of cerebrospinal fluid or an inability to regulate organ function relating to blood pressure control.
  • Diabetes – there is more than one way that diabetes can lead to hypotension despite it often being linked high blood pressure. Certain diabetic medications, dehydration (common with diabetes) and diabetes-related automative nervous system damage can all result in low blood pressure.
  • Hypothyroidism – there are many ways that affected thyroid hormones can cause low blood pressure. High cholesterol levels due to hypothyroidism make arteries narrow and less elastic. Summed up, the lack of thyroid hormones can slow the heart rate, causing low blood pressure levels.
  • Nutrient deficiencies – nutrient deficiencies, especially lack of iron, vitamin B12 and folic acid can cause both hypotension and anemia. These deficiencies cause the incorrect number of blood cells to be made, leading to anemia which can result in low blood pressure concerns. Not having properly functioning red blood cells or a lack of them can significantly raise the possibility of hypotension.

Importance of Medical Evaluation

It may be common to feel dizzy or get headaches from time to time but if it has become a norm its best to see a doctor as they can determine the exact cause. Hypotension can be seen as more of an indicator or symptom of another underlying health issue making it extremely important to know what it is and seek out treatment.

Low Blood Pressure During Pregnancy

Blood pressure drops are to be expected when one is pregnant. There are a number of reasons that pregnant women experience low blood pressure, especially during their first and second trimesters.

  1. This is because the body is changing quickly and many aspects go into getting itself ready for a baby.
  2. Hormonal changes are a big factor that affects blood pressure.
  3. Another is the arteries enlarging to be able to supply more nutrient and oxygen rich blood to the womb.

This can cause hypotension as the pressure of blood weakens as the arteries open after birth, blood pressure levels go back to normal, depending on what that means for the mother, as everyone is different.

low blood pressure high pulse

Management tips for pregnant women

  • Stand up slowly
  • Do not stand for long time periods
  • Regularly eat small meals
  • Hydrate
  • Get enough nutrients
  • Rest
  • Avoid very hot showers or baths
  • Wear loose fitted clothing

Can Dehydration Cause Low Blood Pressure?

Dehydration is the main cause of hypotension, and is often seen as the best solution of “quick fix” to aid in low blood pressure relief. Dehydration can be a symptom within itself that branches off and causes low blood pressure so it is very important that individuals prone to dehydration take this into consideration. Getting enough fluid helps increase blood volume. When individuals experience dehydration, the lack of fluid lowers the volume of blood which in turn causes low blood pressure.

Below are a few symptoms of dehydration:

  • Extreme thirst
  • Less urination
  • Fatigue
  • Nausea
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Dry mouth
  • Dry and cracked lips
  • Pale complexion
  • Weakness
  • Sunken eyes
  • Blurred vision
  • Strong smelling urine
  • Loss of appetite
  • Swollen feet
  • Flushed cheeks

Managing Low Blood Pressure (At Home)

If you have taken the time to visit a medical professional and know your specific cause of hypotension is not currently life-threatening, or there may be time to try more natural options, there are amazing ways to do that, naturally. Such as tea to lower blood pressure, exercise, and ever masturbation.

Here are more ways you can lower your blood pressure naturally:

  • Avoid alcohol
  • Up salt intake (after consulting a doctor)
  • Drink lot of water
  • Stay active
  • Identify triggers and avoid them (sitting up too soon etc.)
  • Eat frequent small meals
  • Tea and natural remedies

Herbal teas that may help lower blood pressure:

  • Chamomile tea
  • Green tea
  • Holy Basil tea
  • Cinnamon tea
  • Garlic infused tea
  • Olive leaf tea
  • Hibiscus tea
  • Hawthorn tea

Frequently Asked Questions:

  1. Does Masturbation Lower Blood Pressure?

Yes, studies show that masturbations’ can aid in lowering blood pressure as it a naturally relieves stress by admitting hormones and neurotransmitters. Additionally, masturbation has been proved to be a sleep aid, a study performed in 2019 proved that over 700 adults had a better sleep outcome after sexual intercourse or masturbation.

  1. What Vitamins Lower Blood Pressure?

Vitamins that may aid in lowering blood pressure include potassium, calcium, fish oil, B-vitamins, C vitamins, magnesium, and more.

  1. I have been Diagnosed with Hypotension ICD 10; what is That?

Hypotension ICD 10 is considered unspecified hypotension. From this point, after the consultation from a medical professional, we would advise you opt for natural alternatives, and see if this aids in relief from hypotension ICD 10.

  1. What is the First Line of Treatment for Hypotension?

DRINK MORE WATER. Water increases your blood volume, so if you are suffering, the first and easiest treatment option is to opt for an extra glass or 2 glasses of water daily.

  1. What is Dangerously Low Blood Pressure?

Blood pressure that drops below 90/60 mm / Hg is considered to be dangerously low, and you should seek medical care immediately!

  1. Can You Reverse Hypotension?

If you are dealing with chronic hypotension, there are effective treatment options available; this may ultimately not cure your condition but relive symptoms and give you a better quality of life!


Pia Vermaak

Pia Vermaak 

Pia Vermaak is the owner of the leading digital marketing and content writing company, MotherTyper. Her skill sets include degrees/certificates in beauty, psychology, business, and writing! MotherTyper has writers from all over the world with different races, genders, and backgrounds, ensuring the perfect piece is written, researched, and presented to you!