When should I be worry about my blood pressure numbers?

Understanding Blood Pressure and Its Implications

Blood pressure is a critical measure of cardiovascular health, represented by two numbers: systolic pressure (the higher number) and diastolic pressure (the lower number). A reading of 137/89 mmHg indicates:

Systolic pressure: 137 mmHg
Diastolic pressure: 89 mmHg

Blood Pressure Categories

Blood pressure is generally classified into the following categories:

- Normal blood pressure:

  • Systolic < 120 mmHg
  • Diastolic < 80 mmHg

- Elevated blood pressure:

  • Systolic 120-129 mmHg
  • Diastolic < 80 mmHg

- Hypertension Stage 1:

  • Systolic 130-139 mmHg
  • Diastolic 80-89 mmHg

- Hypertension Stage 2:

  • Systolic ≥ 140 mmHg
  • Diastolic ≥ 90 mmHg

- Hypertensive Crisis: (requires immediate medical attention)

  • Systolic > 180 mmHg and/or
  • Diastolic > 120
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Interpretation of a 137/89 mmHg Reading

A blood pressure reading of 137/89 mmHg falls into Hypertension Stage 1:

- The systolic pressure (137 mmHg) is within the 130-139 mmHg range for Stage 1 Hypertension.
- The diastolic pressure (89 mmHg) is at the upper limit of the 80-89 mmHg range for Stage 1 Hypertension.

Health Implications

Hypertension Stage 1 requires attention because persistently high blood pressure can lead to serious health issues such as heart disease, stroke, and kidney damage. It indicates that your blood pressure is above normal but not yet at the dangerously high level of Hypertension Stage 2.

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