Blood pressure fluctuates throughout the day due to a variety of factors, says Dr. Joshua Penn, cardiologist at Cedars-Sinai Medical Group. These factors include time of day, stress, anxiety and food sensitivities. Chronic blood pressure fluctuations could be a sign of poorly controlled high blood pressure, Dr. Penn says.Know More
High blood pressure affects 78 million adults in the United States, with many of them unaware, according to the American Heart Association. If high blood pressure remains uncontrolled, it can lead to serious health problems, such as heart disease and stroke. People with high blood pressure whose readings fluctuate are advised by the American Heart Association not to discontinue medication, as fluctuations are a normal occurrence for most people, hypertensive or not.
To get the most accurate blood pressure reading, Berkeley Wellness recommends using the American Heart Association's guidelines. These guidelines state that two separate blood pressure readings be performed a minute apart; the average of the two readings is the final result. Blood pressure readings can vary significantly depending which arm is tested, so testing on both arms is also recommended. Whichever arm tests higher should be the one used. In most cases, doctors test the patient;'s blood pressure over several separate visits before declaring someone hypertensive, says Berkeley Wellness.Learn more about Medical Ranges & Levels
A low blood pressure reading may be the result of hypotension, which is chronically low blood pressure, according to the American Heart Association. However, prolonged bed rest, pregnancy, a decrease in blood volume, certain medications and heart problems can also cause low blood pressure readings.Full Answer >
High blood pressure is signalled by a systolic reading of 140 or higher or a diastolic reading of 90 or higher, according to the American Heart Association. These numbers indicate the pressure in the arteries when the heart contracts or beats and when it relaxes between beats, respectively.Full Answer >
In a high blood pressure reading, the top number is called the systolic pressure, while the bottom number is the diastolic pressure. A systolic pressure reading represents the arterial pressure measurement as the heart is beating, and the diastolic reading is the pressure between successive heartbeats, as explained by the American Heart Association. Stage 1 hypertension can have a systolic pressure reading in the range of 140 to 159, or a diastolic pressure that is between 90 and 99.Full Answer >
Individuals with type 1 diabetes should test their blood sugar four to eight times per day, including before meals or snacks, before and after exercising, before bed and sometimes during the night, notes Mayo Clinic. People with type 2 insulin controlled diabetes should test before meals and sometimes before bed.Full Answer >