- Hypotension can be caused by dehydration, infections, pregnancy, prolonged bed rest, stress and anxiety, or can be a side effect of some medications.
- According to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, blood pressure levels that are below 90/60 mmHG are considered hypotensive.
- Common symptoms of hypotension are lightheadedness and dizziness, fatigue, fainting, lack of concentration, nausea, palpitations, and trouble breathing.
Though not as common a subject as high blood pressure, low blood pressure (hypotension) can also cause distressing symptoms. Extreme cases can have life-threatening consequences.
Though medical intervention may be needed for some cases, there are some remedies you can try at home. Remember to consult your doctor first. Joy Gelbman, MD, a cardiologist at Weill Cornell Medicine and New York-Presbyterian in New York City says, “There are medications that can help treat low blood pressure.”
Consume the proper amount of salt
Our body needs a certain daily amount of salt to function properly and prevent hypotension. However, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services says that the average person usually consumes too much salt. Try to limit sodium intake to a max of 2,300 mg per day.
Increasing your salt intake through a salty snack, sports drinks, or medical-grade hydration, can help if you’re experiencing symptoms of hypotension.
Smaller, regular meals
You may experience a sudden drop in BP after eating a large, carb-heavy meal (known as postprandial hypotension). Try eating smaller, low-carb meals and healthy snacks throughout your day to treat low BP.
Change positions slowly
Orthostatic hypotension could be behind blurred vision or dizziness when you sit or stand up. Avoid moving suddenly or immediately. Dr. Gelbman says you can combat this symptom by changing positions slowly. Anemia could also be a cause for dizziness.
Maybe add extra pillows
An extra pillow to elevate your head above your heart when you sleep helps to combat the effects of gravity as well as hypotension.
Compression socks or stockings can be a good addition to your wardrobe to help combat low BP. They improve symptoms of hypotension by adding pressure to your legs, hence increasing blood flow throughout your whole body.
Drink some coffee
Caffeinated drinks like coffee, cola, or tea can help treat low BP by helping kick start your circulation. Try drinking a cup of caffeine along with your meals.
Drink more fluids
Drinking more fluids prevents hypotension in general as well as dehydration which is the culprit behind a lot of hypotension episodes. Increase your water intake or try drinks with electrolytes like coconut water to prevent symptoms and help manage low BP.
The scissor and squeeze technique
If you’re experiencing low BP symptoms, according to Dr. Gelbman, you can try crossing your thighs in a scissor-like fashion and squeezing as tight as you can. You can also try lying flat and raising your ankles with an object so that they are at a higher level than your heart.
Stay away from unpleasant situations
Getting placed in scary or upsetting situations can also cause a temporary drop in your blood pressure (neurally mediated hypotension). Do what you can to remove yourself from the situation. Lifestyle changes can also help.
Source: The Healthy