Normal Blood Pressure during Pregnancy and Preeclampsia
June 29, 2013 Pregnancy

Many people ask us about normal blood pressure during pregnancy. We will try to answer this question here in greater detail.

blood pressure during pregnancy

by MD Clic Photography under CC BY-SA


Pregnancy causes a lot of changes in a woman’s body and BP can be one of them. The normal range for BP does not really change (120/80 mm/Hg) but fluctuation is to be expected.

What is considered high blood pressure during pregnancy?

Less than 120/80 mm/Hg is the normal level of BP. This is also an ideal blood pressure level, but there are some aspects of pregnancy that may cause it to change.

Pregnant women can sometimes develop lower blood pressure than normal because their body may have a hard time circulating blood. On the other hand, hypertension in pregnancy needs to be avoided because it can cause serious health complications. Thus, a normal blood pressure for women during pregnancy is within the normal range, although realistically there will be variations.

Preeclampsia is a complication which pregnant women can develop if they are constantly straying from the normal BP levels at pregnancy time. Preeclampsia is a medical condition is which affects the placenta and other major organs of the mother including the brain, heart, kidney, and liver. Major symptoms of preeclampsia are high blood pressure (140/90), severe headaches, proteinuria, changes in vision, upper abdominal pain, dizziness, vomiting, nausea, and sudden weight gain (more than 1 kg per week).

The only solution to preeclampsia is baby birth, which is very dangerous if it is still too early in the pregnancy. Usually most dangerous period for pregnant women is beyond 20 weeks of gestation.

High risk of developing Preeclampsia:

  • Those who had high BP even before pregnancy or have what is called chronic hypertension.
  • Women who are overweight before becoming pregnant.
  • Pregnant women who are between 20 and 40 years old.
  • Women who have kidney disease, diabetes, lupus, and other health conditions.
  • Those with a family history of Eclampsia.

Naturally you want to know, what should your BP be at pregnancy time. A good blood pressure is essential to a healthy mother and baby. If you are pregnant and experiencing fluctuating BP all the time, it is best to consult your gynecologist or doctor for proper monitoring, care and treatment.

Also remember that taking medication is not safe for pregnant women so be sure to talk to your gynecologist first.

How to maintain a normal BP range during pregnancy

  • Make sure you keep a blood pressure monitor and remember to check your BP at least once a day.
  • If you are overweight prior to your pregnancy, make sure you do not gain too much weight because obesity is the number one cause of hypertension and related problems.
  • Make sure you do not live a sedentary lifestyle. Even if you are pregnant, it is a necessity that you move and burn those calories.
  • Eat healthy foods and drink lots of water. Dehydration can cause hypertension so make sure you stay hydrated. Also remember that drinking water reduces the risk of Edema (swelling of body parts during pregnancy because of water retention).
  • Avoid stress as much as possible.

If you follow this guidance, you will improve your chances of maintaining a healthy BP while pregnant.

Again, a normal blood pressure during pregnancy is very important so be cautious of your diet plan and activities to make sure that you and your baby stay safe.

Leave a Reply