With high blood pressure being one of the main causes of fatalities in the world, today more and more people are becoming concerned with their pressure readings. However, remarkably few people understand what their blood pressure readings mean and what an acceptable level of blood pressure is. There is also poor awareness when it comes to preventive measures of high blood pressure. Although a blood pressure chart may help them monitor their blood pressure levels, knowing how to lower blood pressure or avoid its development is also necessary. With this information, and help from the blood pressure chart, a person can interpret their pressure levels and take the necessary measures to maintain, increase or decrease the pressure levels.
Blood Pressure Categories
The systolic and diastolic numbers are used when reading blood pressure. The normal blood pressure reading of a healthy adult is 100/70 to 120/80. A blood pressure chart shows the reading of 120/80 as normal. A blood pressure reading of 130/85 also falls within the upper boarder of normal levels. A borderline pressure level indicates the likelihood of developing hypertension unless care is taken to reverse the trend. Similarly, the chart also shows a reading lower than 120/80 such as, 110/75 as low blood pressure. Although low blood pressure is not as dangerous as high blood pressure, persistent low blood pressure with symptoms, damages vital organs in the body.
Stages of High Blood Pressure
High blood pressure has four stages. These are aptly named from 1 to 4. These stages of high blood pressure can be identified by perusing a high blood pressure chart. The high blood pressure chart shows reading of 140/90 as Stage 1 of hypertension. 160/100 shows Stage 2, and 180/110 shows Stage 3. 210/120 indicate Stage 4. The prescription of medication begins with Stage 1 of hypertension. Most often, a thiazide diuretic may be prescribed along with lifestyle changes. Diuretics help the body rid of excess fluid and sodium. Stage 2 hypertension requires diuretics, as well as, another one or two antihypertensive medications and lifestyle changes. Stage 3 hypertension requires constant medical supervision and medication. Stage 3 hypertension is extremely dangerous as the risk of organ damage, hemorrhages in the eyes, and stroke and heart attack, is high. Kidney damage is imminent with Stage 4 hypertension. Surgery may be necessary with Stage 4.
Table 1 – Stages of Hypertension
|Stages in hypertension||Systolic BP||Diastolic BP|
|Isolated systolic hypertension||≥140||≥90|
Blood Pressure Readings According to Age
Blood pressure readings differ by person’s health, age, weight and gender. It also differs and fluctuates during certain times of the day. Knowing the blood pressure differences for different age groups is important to ascertain whether a person is at risk of developing hypertension. An adolescent’s blood pressure reading is not the same as an adult’s. Similarly, adults’ blood pressure readings also differ according to their age. The blood pressure chart B indicates adolescents between the ages of 15 and 19 have minimum blood pressure readings of 105/73 to a maximum of 120/81. 20 to 24 year old persons may have minimum blood pressure readings of 108/75 and a maximum reading of 132/83. 30 to 34 year old adults should have a minimum reading of 110/77 and a maximum reading of 134/85. 50 to 54 year old persons should have a minimum blood pressure reading of 116/81 and a maximum number of 142/89. 60 to 64 year old persons must have a minimum blood pressure reading of 121/83 and a maximum of 147/91.
Table B – Blood Pressure Variations By Age
|Age||Average BP||Minimum BP||Maximum BP|
|15 ~ 19||117/77||105/73||120/81|
|20 ~ 24||120/79||108/75||132/83|
|25 ~ 29||121/80||109/76||133/84|
|30 ~ 34||122/81||110/77||134/85|
|40 ~ 44||125/83||112/79||137/87|
|45 ~ 49||127/84||115/80||139/88|
|50 ~ 54||129/85||116/81||142/89|
|55 ~ 59||131/86||118/82||144/90|
|60 ~ 64||134/87||121/83||147/91|
Treatment of High Blood Pressure
High blood pressure can be lowered through medication. However, borderline blood pressure that is still within normal range but closer to pre-hypertension does not require medication. This can be lowered with exercise, proper diet and weight loss. Most doctors do not prescribe medication when blood pressure levels are in the border line range. They first recommend lifestyle changes, and if this does not help lower blood pressure, the next step will be to prescribe medications.
Adults who worry about their blood pressure levels are benefited by referring to a blood pressure chart or a high blood pressure chart. They can consider lifestyle changes and dietary changes based on these charts. However, medical advice is essential with high blood pressure. Therefore, a doctor should be consulted even with the guidance of the blood pressure chart.