Does Blood Pressure Vary Throughout the Day and Night?

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When you check your blood pressure (BP) with a sphygmomanometer, it may vary from day to day – even throughout the day. This is perfectly normal to respond changes of your physical activities. Other factors, your dietary foods for example, also have an effect to this fluctuation.

How does your blood pressure fluctuate normally throughout the day?

The daily pattern of systolic and diastolic pressures may vary between individuals.

Systolic pressure is the force of blood against the blood vessel walls when the heart works or beats. On the other hand, diastolic pressure is usually lower than systolic pressure because it is the pressure that occurs from the force of the blood against the blood vessel walls when the heart at rest or between beats.

What the time of the day is your BP at its highest level? This may vary. But in general, it usually reaches its optimum level in the middle of the afternoon, according to Mayo Clinic!

And then it decreases gradually in the late afternoon & evening. Overall, it is lower while you want to go to sleep at night. And about 2 hours before you wake up in the morning, then again it starts to rise slowly until it reaches at its peak level in the afternoon.

This BP daily pattern is assumed when there is no any factor that significantly affecst your BP. The high BP can occur any time with a trigger /factor that can give a significant impact on the level!

For instance, if you experience a stressful period at night – your BP may increase higher if you check it straight away!

Why does BP reaches its peak level in the middle of the afternoon

Basically, it is about the mechanism of your body to respond what you do throughout the day.

The blood is the place where oxygen and essential nutrients distributed from one location to another.

The blood flows from the heart to cells of the body through arteries and other blood vessels. And the force of the blood against the walls of your arteries creates pressure that we call as blood pressure.

Theoretically, the blood pressure increases when there is increased volume of blood flow through arteries. It is normally required when your body needs a fast distribution of oxygen and nutrient to the cells of the body’s cells in order to support your activity.

And the intensity of your physical activity tends to increase from morning to afternoon, and then it decreases afterward.

In abnormal scenario, raised blood pressure can occur with certain abnormal condition that causes increased volume of blood through arteries when your body doesn’t need it. For example if you have atherosclerosis or overactive thyroid!.

What is the safe, peak level of BP throughout the day?

The answer may vary! Athletes that get used to regular exercise usually have lower level of BP at its peak level throughout the day. On the other hand, mild hypertensive and established hypertensive people would have higher.

In general, the resting blood pressure is commonly used to determine whether your BP is normal or abnormal (hypertension).

The normal resting BP is commonly about 120 /80 mm Hg. And according to AHA (the American Heart Association), BP is categorized into ‘high’ when it reaches higher than 140 /90.

For more detailed information, talk with your doctor, particularly if you have certain medical problem that requires a closely monitoring on your BP.

What else?

Several causes and conditions may make the daily pattern of your BP run abnormally, these include:


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