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How To Deal With Low Blood Pressure

Courtesy: R. Vijayaragavan, Chennai

Do you feel low for no reason or feel a giddy at times? It could be low blood pressure! "Low blood pressure or hypotension is a common occurrence nowadays, especially among women," says Mumbai-based General Physician, Dhwanika Kapadia.

Causes of Low Blood Pressure

The main cause of low BP could either be dehydration or lack of salt in the body. "For some, however, low BP is normal," says Dhwanika.

Blood pressure is the measure of the force generated on walls of blood cells while its being circulated. The higher reading is known as systolic and the lower, diastolic. Blood pressure is measured as systolic/diastolic. A blood pressure reading of 120/80 is considered normal. "But, if the reading goes below 90/60, it is considered low," says Dr Sunita Dube, Director, Aryan Group of Hospitals.

Other reasons could be anaemia, deficiency of protein or lack of rest. "Spending long hours in the sun or standing for a long time could also cause low blood pressure," says Sunita. Low blood pressure can affect anyone from the age of 17. You could also have low BP if you suffer form a heart condition, are diabetic or are pregnant.

Symptoms of Low Blood Pressure

Here are common symptoms of low blood pressure:
Feeling low or irritable.

"When your brain, kidney or lungs is not getting enough blood, you feel the above symptoms," explains Dr Sunita. One is more prone to low blood pressure during summer as you tend to get dehydrated, she goes on to say.

How To Cure Low Blood Pressure

"In most cases, the cause is either dehydration or the lack of electrolytes in the body," says Dr Dhwanika. Increase intake of fluids to cure it. Drink lot of juices, especially lime water with salt and sugar or coconut water to set the balance of electrolytes in your body. "Include fruits with high water content like watermelon and mangoes in your diet," suggests Dr Sunita. Cut down on smoking, having caffeinated drinks and alcohol.

"Increase the intake of salt in your diet," says Dr Dhwanika. Our body needs up to 2300 mg of salt everyday. "Eating small meals every two hours will also help," says Dhwanika. Exercises like walking, running, skipping, swimming or jogging will improve your circulation and eventually get your blood pressure back to normal.

Low blood pressure slows down the flow of blood. It thus decreases it ability to deliver oxygen and vital nutrients to body parts. It is therefore important to keep it in check.

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