Updated: 2018, May 10

Things To Know About The Blood Pressure Reading

By - Reviewed by CHD Team
Blood Pressure Charts

Overview On Blood Pressure

Blood pressure, at times called arterial blood pressure or simply, BP, is the pressure experienced by the walls of the body’s blood vessels due to the action of the blood pumping through it. BP is one of the chief vital signs of human physiology and is used to assess the overall health of individuals. Blood pressure oscillates with each heartbeat, between a maximum, or systolic, value of pressure and a minimum, or diastolic, value of pressure. The circulatory blood pressure is primarily attributed to the heart’s pumping action.

Typically, blood pressure is used synonymously with the systemic arterial pressure assayed at the individual’s upper arm, and represents the brachial artery’s (the chief artery of the upper arm) pressure. This measure is expressed as a ratio of systolic over diastolic pressure in millimeters of mercury (mm Hg) as well as the value over the standard atmospheric pressure (760 millimeters of mercury).

What are The Ranges of Blood Pressure?

  • High Blood Pressure Range
    There are no telltale symptoms when one is suffering from high blood pressure (140/90 mm Hg or greater), or hypertension as it is more aptly called. The only way to ascertain whether you are experiencing this condition is to check with your physician who will perform a standard BP test on your upper arm to determine your BP value.

    There are four stages of hypertension, with stage 1 being at 140/90 mm Hg, stage 2 at 160/100 mm Hg, stage 3 being at 180/110 mm Hg and stage 4 being at 210/120 mm Hg.

  • Normal Blood Pressure Range
    There is no universally fixed value for normal blood pressure. It is dependent on the general health of the population being sampled, age, gender, and even the time at which the measurement is made. For the sake of providing a value, a study was conducted of a hundred individuals without any past history of high BP, and an average of 120/80 mm Hg was calculated – this value can be considered the normal or desired value for blood pressure. However, it should be kept in mind that these value may apply to one region and not to another due to the factors mentioned above.

    Even if your blood pressure is in the range of 120/80 – 139/89 mm Hg (high normal BP), you should get yourself regularly checked since you are suffering from prehypertension i.e. your condition is likely to develop into fully fledged hypertension if you do not adopt a healthy lifestyle and proper medication.
    110/75 mm Hg is considered to be low normal BP.

  • Low Blood Pressure Range
    Low blood pressure, or hypotension, is the condition of having a blood pressure with a systolic value below 90 mm Hg or a diastolic value below 60 mm Hg. A rapid decrease in one’s BP can be dangerous (60/40 mm Hg), just a 20mm Hg drop in either systolic or diastolic pressure is sufficient to trigger fainting and dizziness, by cutting down the brain’s supply of fresh blood.

Blood pressure drops can be even more severe (50/33 mm Hg) if they are caused by infections turned bad, allergy, or uncontrolled bleeding – leading to fatality.

What Should My Blood Pressure be According to My Age?

For adults, between the ages of 20 to 24, the normal BP is considered to be 120/79, and it progresses by 1 with each five year interval for both systolic and diastolic blood pressure until the 60+ age mark, where the normal systolic value is 134 and diastolic value is 87.

As you grow older, your systolic pressure will continue to increase and diastolic pressure will tend to fall. Old people usually have a higher blood pressure than the value considered the normal average for adults, mainly because of the fact their arteries have become hardened and less flexible.

Age Systolic Diastolic
17 to 19 120 85
20 to 24 120 79
25 to 29 121 80
30 to 34 122 81
35 to 39 123 82
40 to 44 125 83
45 to 49 127 84
50 to 54 129 85
55 to 59 131 86
60+ 134 87

Blood Pressure Chart for Children

Children have their normal blood pressure range lower than adults. Their BP is dependent on height, besides the usual age classification.

Age Males in mmHg Females in mmHg
1 to 3 80/34 to 120/75 83/38 to 117/76
4 to 6 88/47 to 128/84 88/50 to 122/83
7 to 10 92/53 to 130/90 93/55 to 129/88

Bottom Line

A lot of factors go into affecting your blood pressure, and although BP charts are a great way to get an idea of how your BP is faring, it isn’t sure shot because blood pressure varies not just from population to population, but from person to person based on their lifestyle choices. Therefore, you should check with your doctor from time to time for expert advice about your blood pressure.

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