Blood pressure is defined by the force that pushes against the walls of the arteries, as the heart pumps blood throughout the body. This pressure depends on the force and the amount of blood, but also on the size and flexibility of the arteries. Too high, or too low blood pressure, is often associated with different health conditions. Symptoms of high blood pressure are not always obvious before they reach the most severe stage. However, symptoms of low blood pressure are generally very unpleasant and may even be upsetting if the person isn’t really sure what causes them.
Symptoms of abnormal blood pressure
As already mentioned, in most of the cases there are no symptoms of high blood pressure. If present, the symptoms include ear noise or buzzing, irregular heartbeats, headache, confusion, fatigue, changes in vision and nose bleeding. Symptoms of low blood pressure include blurry vision, confusion, dizziness, light-headedness, sleepiness, general weakness, fainting, chest pain, headache, etc.
Measuring blood pressure without a cuff
Typically, blood pressure is measured using a blood pressure cuff. However, in some situations people may want to know if their blood pressure is normal, even without any type of equipment. However, this kind of measurement isn’t completely accurate as it provides good results only for the systolic measurement. To measure diastolic blood pressure, a person will need to use an arm cuff or the stethoscope.
To start with the measurement without a cuff, a person should find a specific place on the arm by running two fingers of the opposite hand along the wrist. This place is situated below the thumb and just slightly above the wrist. In most of the cases, a person will have no troubles feeling the pulse on this exact spot. If the radial pulse is noticeable, it means that the systolic measurement is at least 80. When the blood pressure drops below this level, the radial pulse is very hard to detect without any equipment. Since the radial artery is smaller than the femoral artery, the blood pressure has to be at least 80 mmHg for a pulse to reach it.
To get the exact measurements or to measure the diastolic pressure one should get a blood pressure cuff and wrap it around the brachial artery, on the arm. The next step is to place a stethoscope over the artery and inflate the arm cuff until there is no pulse. Then, a person has to let the air out of the cuff slowly while paying attention on the number on the dial until the pulse is heard once again.