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It's a good idea to take several readings at different times in order to determine your blood pressure average. This is because there are many factors that can cause a single blood pressure reading to be higher or lower blood pressure than your "average." Healthcare professionals generally agree that a healthy blood pressure is one that ranges from 90/60 to 120/80.
Understanding Blood PressureBlood pressure is the amount of force that blood exerts on the walls of the blood vessels as it flows through them. A blood pressure reading includes two numbers. These numbers are written like a fraction -- for example: 110/90. The top number of the blood pressure reading represents the systolic pressure. It measures the pressure inside your blood vessels at the moment your heart beats. The bottom number is your diastolic pressure. It measures the pressure in your blood vessels between heartbeats.
Factors Affecting Average Blood PressureBlood pressure changes often throughout the day. Things that can make your blood pressure change within just a few minutes include:
- Your level of tension
- Exercise level
- Nicotine use.
Given these normal fluctuations, you can see why even average blood pressure can fluctuate within a certain range every day. With this in mind, it's best to use more than one blood pressure reading to figure out your blood pressure average.
Remember, blood pressure can also run low or high in families. Don't forget to look at your lifestyle, overall health, and diet when comparing your readings against "normal blood pressure." Factors such as these may cause you to have a higher or lower blood pressure than what's considered normal.