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It is quite common for women to develop blood pressure during pregnancy. Hypertension as it is sometimes called, occurs when there is a significant increase in the blood pressure in the vessels . There are two figures used as fraction when blood pressure is recorded and it is measured in millimeters of mercury (mm Hg). The figure on top describes the systolic blood pressure which is the pressure of the blood when the heart contracts. The second figure at the bottom describes the diastolic pressure which is the pressure of the blood when the heart rests.
The condition of blood pressure in pregnant women may be mild and not severe but there are also times when it could be very serious. The development of this condition in pregnant women can lead to some other complications like pre-eclampsia. It is therefore very necessary for every pregnant woman to do everything possible to avoid this terrible condition from developing.
As a pregnant woman, your blood pressure readings would go a long way in determining the type of medications you would be given. During pregnancy, normal blood pressure is expected to be below 140/90 mm Hg. When there is mild blood pressure, the reading could be between 140/90 and 149/99 mm Hg whereas for a moderately high blood pressure, there could be a recording between 150/100 and 159/109 mm Hg. When the case becomes severe, the blood pressure reading could be between 160/110 mm Hg or even higher.
Different Types of Blood Pressure in Pregnancy
There are different types of blood pressures as experienced by pregnant women. Just have a look at them:
For some women, there exist telltale signs of high blood pressure even before they became pregnant. Some women show signs of high blood pressure before their pregnancy becomes 20 weeks old. This is chronic or pre-existing high blood pressure which increases the chances of the mother developing pre-eclampsia during pregnancy.
Some women develop high blood pressure while they are pregnant which is said to be pregnancy-induced high blood pressure or gestational high blood pressure. This type of high blood pressure develops for the first time after pregnancy has advanced into the 20th week. Protein is observed to be absent in the urine of pregnant women with gestational high blood pressure.
What is pre-eclampsia and eclampsia?
When a pregnant woman develops high blood pressure for the first time after the 20th week of her pregnancy, she becomes susceptible to this condition.
Pre-eclampsia is capable of causing high blood pressure as well as causing severe damages to the liver, kidneys, blood clotting system and the brain. With the onset of pre-eclampsia, there would be leakage of protein from the kidneys into the urine of a pregnant woman which would be detectable when the urine is tested. The condition can however get better after about six weeks of delivery.