I have low blood pressure. Many people try to explain their annoying discomfort or failure with this statement. It is therefore understandable that the doctor consulted receives such a remark with a certain skepticism and first tries to clarify through detailed examinations whether the low blood pressure is really the main reason for the complaints presented.
At rest, the blood pressure of younger people is between 100/60 and 125/80 mm Hg (millimeters of mercury).
The blood pressure values usually measured reflect the pressure in larger arteries, usually the upper arm artery. The pressure values prevailing during the contraction of the heart and the cardiac pause are measured and related to one another. At rest, the blood pressure of younger people is between 100/60 and 125/80 mm Hg (millimeters of mercury). Much more difficult than these values are to determine the pressure conditions in the pulmonary arteries, which are of practical interest in the case of a smaller number of circulatory and pulmonary diseases.
The blood pressure in the arteries is dependent on numerous factors and can therefore change constantly. It is determined by the amount of blood flowing out with each heartbeat, the heart rate, the total amount of blood circulating and the viscosity of the blood. The smallest arteries, also called arteries, are a decisive factor in the mechanical circulation.
These can contract very tightly and expand relatively strongly, so that they form the bottleneck of the circulatory system that is crucial for regulating blood pressure. The blood pressure is regulated according to the principle of multiple safeguards, with the nervous system, blood pressure-effective hormones and a number of metabolic products involved in the cell activity of all organs.
An economical circulation control means the best possible blood supply to the working organs with the most economical use of the overall circulation. This also includes the ability to adapt as quickly as possible to work-related increases in blood requirements in individual organs.
The circulatory performance in organ systems that are currently working less intensively must be throttled and the resting values must be reached again as quickly as possible after the momentary additional demand has been satisfied. The necessity of an elastic adjustment of the circulatory performance to the often rapidly changing demands of the organism means that the arterial blood pressure changes accordingly even in healthy people.
In the case of high physical stress, such as psychological excitement, the pressure can rise 20 to 60 mm Hg above the resting values. The more efficient the circulatory system is, the faster it returns to the initial values. Conversely, the lowest blood pressure values are measured in the state of greatest relaxation during night sleep. In older people, due to the tissue changes in the vascular walls, slightly higher blood pressure values are necessary to ensure an adequate blood supply to the tissues. So it is a normal process of adaptation to physiological age changes.
One should only speak of a blood pressure that is too low if there are signs of local or general circulatory failure at the same time. The effects of low blood pressure are indeed very different. There are people who throughout their life never have more than 100/70 or below resting values without ever suffering from complaints or limitations in their performance.
Many of them even live to an old and carefree age. These people have a special constitutional condition in which the above-mentioned low blood pressure values are completely sufficient to achieve a harmonious one due to the general texture of the tissue, the structure of the vessels, often also due to a special constellation in the household of the glands with internal secretion and a calm temperament To ensure circular performance.
More widespread, however, is the group in which the low blood pressure level is part of a general instability of the circulatory regulation. In these cases the interplay of the numerous blood pressure regulating factors is disturbed, and in addition to the excessively low blood pressure, there are often other signs of uneconomical cardiovascular activity.
In addition, every family doctor will know patients in whom periods of low blood pressure alternate with periods of high blood pressure. This unbalanced circulatory regulation is often expressed in an inadequate blood supply to very specific circulatory areas, such as the head, the coronary arteries and lungs, the abdominal organs or limbs.
Accordingly, symptoms and symptoms can be very different. The general signs of such regulatory circulatory failure are: Loss of stamina during physical and mental exertion, fatigue, poor concentration, pale head (without anemia).
Some people with circulatory disorders cannot stand for long periods of time without feeling sick and fainting. Mood swings are also very common; usually being downcast predominates. Other circulatory disorders suffer from heat balance disorders with shivering and hypothermia of the limbs. Due to the slowly flowing blood sinking into the veins and hair vessels, the feet tend to swell.
With the predominant failure of individual circulatory areas, corresponding complaints come to the fore. If the blood supply to the head fails, headaches, fatigue and increased psychological excitability often prevail, and if there is a lack of blood supply to the heart muscle, oppression and heart pain prevail.
The circulatory failure of the pulmonary circulation often causes shortness of breath, while circulatory disorders in the digestive organs can cause loss of appetite and a tendency to gas.
The forms of lowering the blood pressure that cause complaints can be caused by a variety of circumstances. The lack of physical exercise or the sudden discontinuation of previously accustomed physical activity play a major role.
After severe emotional shocks, it is also not uncommon for long-lasting loss of tone in the vascular system with a simultaneous reduction in blood pressure. Metabolic processes can also lead to a drop in blood pressure, such as an overly severe restriction in protein intake. Liver problems are also often accompanied by low blood pressure.
The drop in blood pressure after acute infections is observed as a temporary symptom. In some epidemics, recovery after virus flu is characterized by annoying circulatory disorders that impair performance. In other cases, chronic infections of the organs of the head, especially of the teeth, tonsils and mucous membranes of the nasopharynx, cause circulatory disorders, as well as the failure of some glands with internal secretion, especially the thyroid and adrenal glands.
In contrast to the forms of low blood pressure mentioned so far, the lowering of blood pressure caused by chronic heart defects or acute failure of the cardiac output must be assessed.
Many complaints that are caused by the negative pressure can be effectively combated with the help of appropriate lifestyle habits and targeted treatment measures. In most cases, the main thing is to train the inadequate regulatory capacity of the circulatory system. Correctly dosed physical exercise and some water applications are ideal for this. The exercise of the muscles stimulates the essential individual factors of circulatory regulation. It causes increased blood flow to the muscles that are being used; at the same time, however, the blood flow in other circulatory areas is throttled to compensate.
If the muscles are more active, the additional amounts of blood required are withdrawn from the blood stores (spleen, skin, liver, lungs). Finally, muscle play also promotes the return of blood to the heart. All of these factors not only contribute to the proper functioning of the various regulatory processes of blood distribution, but also increase the endurance and overall performance of the cardiovascular system. Daily walking a longer distance is the most suitable and at the same time easiest and constantly realizable form of circulatory training, such as a walk to work, the evening walk and the weekend hike.
In summer, the circulatory effect of the movement can be increased by air baths and team sports (e.g. volleyball). The elderly should also adopt circulatory training habits such as gardening, ball games and swimming.
Among the circulatory training forms of treatment that can be carried out at home alone are: dry brushing, cold full washes or rubbing, cold rubbing or brushing thigh baths. For the cold full washes, all you need is a folded towel and cold water.
You stand undressed on a mat and wash your face, neck, extremities and the front of your torso with the well-moistened cloth in large strokes. In between, the cloth is repeatedly rinsed in water. To treat the back, unfold the cloth so that, grasped at both ends, it reaches all parts of the back over both shoulders and rubbing in a circular motion.
After washing, which only takes about 2 minutes, you either warm up in bed without drying off or rub yourself dry. Then you dress immediately. For cold rubbing or brush baths, the bathtub is filled a hand's width with water that is as cold as possible. Sit down with your knees straight and rub your legs, arms and front of your torso with flat hands, which are repeatedly dipped into the water. Finally, while bending your knees, move your buttocks a little to the foot of the tub and briefly dip your back into the water two or three times. Instead of bare hands, you can also use two bath brushes. The duration of the bath should be 2 minutes.
Then rub yourself dry. If there are rewarming problems after cold water applications, it is better to start with cold washings and foot baths and only later switch to the more tonic cold applications. Depending on the prevailing complaints, there are a number of special measures, the prescription of which, however, is the responsibility of the attending physician.
Only two points of view that apply to many cases should be pointed out. Loss of tone in the abdominal organs, both in the abdominal wall and in the intestines, is often of central importance for the development of negative pressure complaints. As a result of this loss of tone, large amounts of slowly circulating blood sink into the abdominal organs and are withdrawn from the organs in the upper half of the body in particular. Special gymnastic exercises are in place here, which have a strengthening effect on the abdominal organs.
For example, rhythmic swing exercises, especially rope swinging, jumping rope and most ball games, are very suitable. Breathing exercises learned under experienced guidance can also improve circulatory control. Against the blood depletion in the head organs, probably known as the most annoying negative pressure symptom, helps to raise the legs during a short break. Gymnastic exercises such as the so-called candle or - for the more flexible - the headstand prove to be an effective exercise factor not only in terms of instantaneous switching of the blood distribution. Both exercises give impulses for a long-lasting improvement in blood circulation in the head.
For the same patients, the cold pouring of the face several times a day means good promotion of the blood circulation in the head. From a container with a capacity of about 2 liters, the face is slowly poured over a wide area at eyebrow level from right to left and backwards. Starting with 2 to 3 vessels, the number of pourings can be gradually increased.
Finally, the following note: It is not uncommon for causal relationships to exist between an insufficient supply of the vitamin B complex and circulatory failure. Adequate intake of these active ingredients, which we find in whole grain products, especially in wheat germ and yeast, is particularly important for improving blood pressure. The amount of protein in the diet must not be too small either. It is up to the individual whether they prefer more dairy products (all types of milk, quark, cheese) or fish or lean meat.
One should first tackle the causes of circulatory failure by reviewing lifestyle habits, before using medical aids.