Handling Blood Pressure During Pregnancy

Your blood pressure during pregnancy will be measured several times, most probably during every prenatal appointment that you will have. This is important to make sure that you are healthy and to make sure that the baby will be healthy as well.

Blood Pressure During Pregnancy

Changes of blood pressure when being pregnant

It is a known fact that the blood pressure changes a bit during pregnancy. This is something to be expected and it happens because progesterone relaxes the walls of the blood vessels. As a result you could have lower blood pressure during the first and second trimester.

As a result of the changes of blood pressure while being pregnant it is possible that you will feel dizzy and some women faint because of it. The blood pressure is the lowest between weeks 18 and 20. At that moment you will have more blood in your system than you usually do. Your blood pressure will go back to normal a few weeks before childbirth.

Measuring blood pressure

In order to measure your blood pressure during pregnancy your midwife will use a sphygmomanometer that measures and records your blood pressure. Before this happens you will have to sit down and remove any tight clothing from your arms. Then the midwife will place a cuff on your arm and she will pump air into it.

As a result, during measuring blood pressure of pregnant women the blood flow will stop for a while in your arm. Then the cuff slowly releases the pressure. After this the sphygmomanometer measures the blood pressure and it will offer a reading to the midwife.

The reading of the blood pressure during pregnancy will look like a fracture, like 110/70. The first number refers to the blood pressure, as the blood pumps blood into your blood vessels and the second number is the blood pressure when the heart relaxes and doesn’t pump.

There is no normal range of pregnant women’s blood pressure. In normal cases the blood pressure should vary between 110/70 and 120/80. However during pregnancy the blood pressure may fluctuate and higher blood pressure can also be normal for you.

There is reason to be concerned regarding the blood pressure during pregnancy only in case this if it is higher than 140/90. Also keep in mind that one reading might be misleading. This is why if the reading isn’t in the normal range the midwife will measure again your blood pressure.

Why is the blood pressure measured?

The midwives find it important to measure your blood pressure. For instance she could be looking for signs of preeclampsia especially during the later stages of your pregnancy. This condition appears when the placenta isn’t working as it should. In this case the midwife will also test your urine and she will be looking for the protein levels.

You shouldn’t worry too much about the blood pressure during pregnancy because this varies from one woman to the other and this is why you shouldn’t compare the results that you get.


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