Published May 04, 2023 by

Blood pressure: Definition, Types, Determination and Control


What is blood pressure? 

Blood pressure is essential for blood to circulate through the blood vessels and fulfill its function of bringing oxygen and nutrients to all the tissues of the body that they need to maintain their activity correctly. It can be defined as the force that the blood exerts on the walls of the arteries, which is highest (systolic pressure) when the heart pumps it towards the arteries and lowest (diastolic pressure) between one beat and another of the heart muscle. 

And these, the systolic and diastolic, are the values ​​used to measure blood pressure, which is important when evaluating the general state of health, since the case of being above normal (hypertension) It can mean a significant risk of suffering serious diseases (heart disease, heart attack, stroke, kidney failure, etc.). When it is low (hypotension) it can cause states of confusion, dizziness, vertigo, fainting, weakness or drowsiness.

Blood pressure is expressed in two numbers, such as 115/75 mm Hg. First larger, number (called systolic pressure), is the pressure when the heart beats. The second, or smaller, number (called pressure diastolic) is the pressure when the heart rest between beats. Blood pressure is normal if it is around 120/80 mmHg.

Types of blood pressure

Based on the blood pressure values ​​(the first is systolic or high blood pressure and the second is diastolic or low), it is classified as follows: 


The values ​​that determine normality can range between 90/60 and 130/90 mm of mercury. 

2.Hypotension or low blood pressure: 

When there is a drop of 20 mm of mercury over the values ​​that are usually found. what is blood pressure

3.Hypertension or high blood pressure:

If it exceeds 140/90 mm of mercury. Aging usually entails an increase in blood pressure due to the hardening of the arterial walls, so it is very common for older people to suffer from hypertension.


In a recently incorporated classification that is determined when the blood pressure value is between 130/80 and 140/90 mm of mercury. The reason is that specialists consider that it is time to start a more continuous monitoring of blood pressure and to adopt preventive measures that affect life habits, especially with regard to diet and regular exercise, as well as Quitting tobacco if you are a smoker.

It must be taken into account that blood pressure values ​​do not remain unchanged throughout the day, but rather fluctuate depending on different factors. This classification defines the existence or not of pathological states. However, there are situations in which a specific increase or decrease in blood pressure can occur that do not necessarily imply the existence of a blood pressure problem. 

Thus, stress or dangerous situations can cause a temporary but significant increase as a result of elevated secretion of adrenaline and norepinephrine or activation of the parasympathetic nervous system, factors that contribute to an increase in heart rate. On the contrary, dehydration, alcohol consumption, the consumption of certain medications, hypoglycemia or shock situations (anaphylaxis, heart attack, etc.), among other causes, can induce a sudden drop in blood pressure.

How to examine the blood pressure :

1.Sit in a chair with your back supported. Legs should be uncrossed and feet on the ground. 

2.Your arm should be supported so that your forearm is at the level of your heart. Roll up your sleeves so that your arm is bare. Make sure the sleeve is not pinching your arm. If you are, take your arm out of the sleeve or take off your shirt. 

3.You or your provider will wrap the cuff snugly around your arm. The lower edge of the cuff will be 1 inch (2.5 cm) above the bend of the elbow. 

4.The cuff will inflate quickly. This is done either by pumping with the bulb or by pressing a button on the device. You will be feeling tightness around your arm. 

5.The cuff valve is then opened slightly, allowing the pressure to drop slowly. 

6.As the pressure drops, the reading is recorded as soon as the sound of blood pulsing is heard. This is the systolic pressure. 

7.As the air continues to come out, the sounds disappear. The point at which the sound stops must be recorded. This is the diastolic pressure.

8. Inflating the cuff very slowly or not inflating it to an enough high pressure can cause a false reading. If you loosen the valve too much, you will not be able to measure your blood pressure.

Ranges of normal blood pressure values

Those considered as normal values ​​of blood pressure are the following: 

Systolic pressure between 10 and 14 cm Hg (100 and 140 mm) Diastolic pressure between 6 and 9 cm Hg (60 and 90 mm) Therefore, you have a normal blood pressure if you are within these values. The most advisable thing would be to have a systolic pressure that does not exceed 12 cm (maximum 13) and the diastolic pressure below 9 cm Hg. It should be noted that with age, tension tends to rise, since blood vessels lose elasticity. 

Hypertension or high blood pressure occurs in values ​​above 14 and 9, where pressures ​​below 10 and 6 indicate hypotension or low blood pressure. If you tend to have high blood pressure or have a family history, we recommend that you read this article on keys to prevent hypertension. On the other hand, if you think you may suffer from hypotension, we invite you to read this other article so that you know what the symptoms of low blood pressure are.

Normal blood pressure values ​​according to age 

As we have commented in the previous section, the normal levels of normal tension tend to vary according to age and also sex, so it is convenient to know what the figures are for each specific case. Take note: 


       Systolic pressure

    Diastolic pressure




































60 or more years






All this information is the normal blood pressure that a person of the mentioned age group has. In case these ranges are not met, it is best to consult a doctor to see the best treatment for high or low blood pressure.

Some of the risk factors associated with high blood pressure cannot be changed:

Anyone can develop high blood pressure. However, some people are more likely to develop it due to factors they cannot change. These factors are:

Age: The chance of having blood pressure increases with the increase of age of a person. 

Gender: Men are more likely to have the risk of high blood pressure after the age of 55. After menopause, women are at the risk of more likely to have high blood pressure.

The family tree: Some families are more likely to have high blood pressure.

Race: African Americans are at higher gamble of growing hypertension.

How can you control your blood pressure?

In the aged people, high blood pressure is very a very common side. The vascular framework changes as individuals age. As the arteries become harder, blood pressure goes up. This is valid in any event, for individuals who have propensities that benefit heart wellbeing. Fortunately circulatory strain can be controlled in the vast majority.

You can lower your risk of high blood pressure by making a number of changes to your lifestyle:

1.Be healthy in your weight: Overweight people are more likely to have high blood pressure.

2.If you need to loose weight, ask your doctor: You should do exercise every one of the days. High blood pressure risk can be reduced through moderate exercise. Set goals for exercising safely and gradually increase your daily exercise time to at least 30 minutes on most days of the week. If you have untreated health issues, consult your doctor before beginning an exercise plan.

3.Eat a nutritious diet: An eating routine wealthy in natural products, vegetables, entire grains, and low-fat dairy items can assist with bringing down circulatory strain.

4.Reduce salt intake: Your body and blood pressure become more sensitive to salt (sodium) as you get older, so you might need to figure out how much salt you eat. The majority of salt comes from processed foods, such as baked goods and soups. The DASH diet, which is low in salt, can lower blood pressure. Discuss ways to reduce your salt intake with your doctor.

5.Drink less alcohol: Blood pressure can be affected by alcohol intake. To reduce the likelihood of developing high blood pressure, men should have no more than two drinks per day, while women should have only one.

6.Avoid smoking: Smoking raises the risk of heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, and other health issues. Stop smoking if you do. The health benefits of quitting smoking can be felt at any age, and it is never too late to quit.

7.Have a restful night's sleep: If you've been told that you snore or sound like you're stopping breathing while you sleep, tell your doctor. This might be an indication of an health issue called rest apnea. Getting a good night's sleep and treating sleep apnea can lower blood pressure.

8.Manage stress: Lowering your blood pressure can be accomplished by relaxing and properly addressing issues.

If these way of life changes don't bring down your blood pressure to a protected level, your doctor will likewise recommend medicine. Before you find a treatment plan that works best for you, you can try a variety of drug types and combinations. Drugs have some control over your circulatory strain, yet they can't fix it. It is likely that you will need to take medication for the rest of your life. Discuss with your physician ways to control your blood pressure.