Low blood pressure in pregnancy is a common thing. This condition does not cost major problems most of the time and after you give birth, blood pressure will return to pre-pregnancy levels. However, in some cases, very low blood pressure can be dangerous for baby and mom.
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Effects of pregnancy on blood pressure:
If you are pregnant, your nurse or doctor will check your blood pressure at every prenatal visit.
Blood pressure is the force of our blood as it thrust against artery walls while our heart pumps. It can go down or up at a certain time of the day. It may change if you are feeling nervous or excited.
Reading your blood pressure shows important information about the health of you and your baby. When you are pregnant, many changes happen in your body and it can affect your body’s blood pressure. In pregnancy, your circulatory system inflates quickly, which can cause a drop in BP.
There are a lot of factors which can contribute to low blood pressure include:
- An allergic reaction
- Nutritional deficiencies
- Internal bleeding
- Endocrine disorders
- Certain medications
- Prolonged bed rest
- Heart conditions
Normal BP for the pregnant woman
A normal blood pressure reading as:
- The Top Number: Less than 120 mm Hg systolic
- The Bottom Number: Over 80 mm Hg diastolic
- Doctors typically determine that if your reading is below 90/60 mm Hg then your blood pressure is low.
Dangers of low blood pressure in pregnancy
Mostly, low blood pressure during pregnancy is not a cause for concern unless you experience symptoms. Big drops maybe the caution of a serious or even life-threatening.
Extremely low BP during pregnancy can lead to shock, falls, and organ damage.
Low BP can also be a sign of ectopic pregnancy and this happens when a fertilized egg implants outside of a woman’s uterus.
Does low blood pressure in pregnancy affect the baby?
A lot of research is done on how high blood pressure during pregnancy affects babies but on the effects of low BP data are limited.
According to some studies, low BP during pregnancy may lead to problems, such as low birth weight and stillbirth.
Symptoms of low blood pressure in pregnancy
- Lack of concentration
- Rapid or shallow breathing
- Clammy, pale, or cold skin
- Unusual thirst
- Lightheadedness, especially when sitting up or standing
- Blurred vision
Call your doctor if you develop any symptoms of low BP in pregnancy.
Diagnosis of low BP during pregnancy
Your nurse or doctor will place an inflatable cuff around your arm and use a pressure-measuring gauge to calculate your BP. You can do this test in your doctor’s office or you can buy your own device and can measure your blood pressure at home.
Treatment for low blood pressure during pregnancy
Mostly, you don’t need any kind of treatment for low BP in pregnancy. Doctor’s do not suggest medication for pregnant women unless symptoms are serious. Blood pressure in pregnancy will start to rise on its own during your third trimester.
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Self-care for low BP during pregnancy
You can try the following self-care steps if you do experience symptoms of low blood pressure:
- Drink more water
- Avoid getting up quickly from lay or seated position
- Wear loose clothing
- Eat small meals throughout the day
- Don’t take very hot showers or baths
- Try not to stand for a long period of time
It’s also a good idea to take your prenatal supplements and eat a healthy diet (Read About: Foods to eat during pregnancy) during your pregnancy to prevent symptoms of low blood pressure.
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