When blood pressure is measured we need to take into account 2 measurements. The first one is called Systolic Blood Pressure and the second one is Diastolic Blood Pressure.
Systolic Blood Pressure is taken when the heart is pumping out blood, and Diastolic is taken between heartbeats, when the heart is resting.
There is a device called Sphygmomanometer which is used to measure blood pressure. You might be familiar with this device; it’s the inflatable arm cuff that comes with a little air pump. You might also be able to see some station to measure your blood pressure in some supermarkets. So you can easily keep an eye on your pressure and take action if your levels are not what’s considered normal.
When we read the results that this device gives us, the Systolic pressure is the number on the top or left side of the reading; being the Diastolic pressure the number on the bottom or right side.
Let’s see an example: If you have a blood pressure of 120/72 (you read it as 120 over 72), that means that you have a Systolic Pressure of 112 and a Diastolic Pressure of 72. These two levels of blood pressure are both very important and you need to keep them at a healthy level.
So, what is a normal blood pressure? Experts would say that a blood pressure of 119/79 is the healthiest level for an adult and every adult should try to keep that level. A blood pressure between 120/80 and 129/84 is considered normal. Between 130/85 and 139/89 is considered a high-normal blood pressure and, when you reach a level of 140/90 or higher, you need to pay close attention because that’s consider a high blood pressure.
It’s recommended to check your blood pressure after you get up from sleeping and walk around for a few hours, this way you can get a better reading than when taken right away in the morning. Of course, you should not check your pressure after intense physical activities because the results won’t show a normal level. One more important thing is not to drink anything that contains caffeine or alcohol, and not to smoke for at least 30 minutes before the checking.
During the day, it’s natural if your blood pressure fluctuates somewhat. There are many activities that we do everyday that can make our blood pressure go up. Sometimes our pressure changes if we do some physical activity like intensive weight lifting training, sometimes the way we feel mentally can increase our blood pressure even the food we eat is another factor we can consider as a trigger for increments in our blood pressure levels.