BP Basics

Understanding Blood Pressure Swings


If your blood pressure fluctuates slightly, you need worry about it. However, if there are extreme variations, an underlying medical condition could be the cause behind it. Blood pressure swings are not characterized by any symptoms. Thus, it may be difficult for you to diagnose the problem.

Are these really fluctuations?
Before you begin to deal with blood pressure swings, you need to ascertain if the blood pressure swings are for real or not. This means that you need to find out if your blood pressure levels are actually fluctuating or not. If you monitor your blood pressure at home, the fluctuations shown could be a result of inaccurate checking. Sometimes, using faulty or poor quality blood pressure monitoring machines could also display fluctuations. Thus, it becomes important to ensure that you are using a flawless machine and using the right technique. It is recommended that you undertake some training so that you can measure blood pressure correctly.

Check the level of fluctuations
Once you have made certain that your blood pressure levels are actually fluctuating, the next step is to check the level of fluctuations. If your blood pressure is fluctuating by only 25 % to 30 %, there is nothing to worry about. These minor fluctuations reflect the changes that your body goes through each day. However, if the fluctuations are beyond 30 %, you may need to consult your health care provider.

Consider the underlying factors
There are so many factors that could be responsible for an increase in your blood pressure. Things as minor as a tight shoe lace could cause your blood pressure levels to rise. See if you are stressed out or if you have had something unhealthy for breakfast. You may witness fluctuations in blood pressure if you have not slept well the previous night.

Need for treatment
You may need adequate treatment if your blood pressure levels are fluctuating despite being relaxed and well rested. But, there is nothing to worry even in such cases. It is possible that the variations are a result of the body's natural cycle. In some cases, the fluctuations could be a result of mild to moderate high blood pressure.

But, if your baseline blood pressure is normal and your BP still continues to fluctuate, the cause could lie in some other medical condition. There can be problems with the heart, kidney or even the blood vessels. A hormone problem or some kind of tumor could also be responsible for the BP fluctuations. Your doctor may recommend various tests to diagnose the problem.