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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have fairly low blood pressure - at my last app't (28 weeks), it was 90/55. The low blood pressure has only been a serious health issue 2x in my life - once, when I passed out during a crew race, and earlier this year during miscarriage. The feeling is really awful - what happens is that my blood pressure does not go up with the demands of my body, so my heart rate goes up more than it should, and then it suddenly drops - and I either pass out or get scary weak/dizzy/short of breath.<br><br>
You can see where this is going - I have some fears about how this might manifest during birth, and am trying to find ways to relieve anxiety about it. I will certainly talk to my drs/mw about it once we start talking about birth plans, but has anyone else dealt with low blood pressure-related issue during birth - any tips/tricks? This is the one thing about labor that is giving me anxiety, and I know that fear can cripple my ability to deal effectively with the pain - so I'd like to resolve my fears before the time comes!
 

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I have very low blood pressure too, around 80/60ish. It didn't cause me any problems during labor while I was at home although after I transported to the hospital and had an epidural it went too low and they had to give me some medication to boost it back up. I hope that is the case with you as well, I didn't notice any problems, dizziness, etc. at any time while I was in labor, delivering, or afterward.
 

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I was interested to see your post because you hear so much about high blood pressure and so little about low blood pressure. I too have low blood pressure but not quite as low as yours -- I think at my last appt mine was something like 98/60. Anyway, my midwife is concerned about it and recommends that I engage in regular cardiovascular exercise to support increased blood volume and to get my blood really moving, at least 3x/week. The only other recommendation she's given me is to make sure I'm drinking my infused teas, esp nettles which have a lot of good nutrients/minerals. And just generally staying really hydrated which also helps increase blood volume. Beyond that, I can tell you that for what it's worth, in my last pregnancy my blood pressure did increase a bit late in the 3rd tri to around 100/65? or somthing like that. I had no related complications whatsoever with my first birth. I have heard that low blood pressure in the mama can contribute to lower birth weight and preterm labor but at least in my case, labor started on my due date and baby boy was 9 lbs, 15 oz. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> I'd be curious to know what your care provider has said about trying to increase your blood pressure.
 

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Just checking -- you're not taking supplemental EFAs, are you? A known effect of EFAs (essential fatty acids, as in fish oil) is to lower blood pressure. I normally have blood pressure around 120/70, and when I took EFAs during pregnancy it dropped to 95/65 and I was having dizzy spells. When I stopped talking the EFAs my blood pressure returned to normal.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>fourlittlebirds</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/9899966"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Just checking -- you're not taking supplemental EFAs, are you? A known effect of EFAs (essential fatty acids, as in fish oil) is to lower blood pressure. I normally have blood pressure around 120/70, and when I took EFAs during pregnancy it dropped to 95/65 and I was having dizzy spells. When I stopped talking the EFAs my blood pressure returned to normal.</div>
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That's interesting, my BP had started out around 120/80 is and it seemed to be going down from then,though not alarmingly, and meanwhile I had been taking an Omega-3 supplement. I ran out about 2 weeks ago, so when I see my MW on Wednesday, it will be interesting to see if it has gone back up at all.
 

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I have low blood pressure as well and was having some difficulty w/ it plummeting and me feeling very ill earlier in pregnancy.<br><br>
One thing I would totally avoid is an epidural - I got SO ill from the epi I had with my first child (never again had one it was so bad) because my bp tanked and they had to give me 2 different things to get it up and stabilized.<br><br>
I've had low bp with all my pregnancies and have never had a problem during birth (that wasn't medically induced, that is! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/irked.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="irked"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">. Some studies link low bp during pregnancy with babies with lower birth-weights, but I'm totally not worried about that after birthing my 10lbs14oz baby at 40w1d!<br><br>
My mw's basically just made sure I stayed well-hydrated during labor ... I made homemade electrolyte drink (apple juice, water, salt, baking soda, lemon juice) and drank a TON of it during my labor. Being well hydrated combined with the added salt helps keep your bp "up".
 

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I, too, have low blood pressure and the only difficulty it causes is dizziness. After my second child was born I went to a doctor for an unrelated issue and mentioned the dizziness and he suggested I make sure that I put more iodized salt on my food. It has been 6 years and when I start getting dizzy I eat extra salt for a few days and the dizziness goes away. Also electrolyt drinks as mentioned above help.<br>
The only serious problem I had was that my doctor was hesistant to say that I had pre-eclampsia because my blood pressure was 'normal', well, normal for me and normal for most people is different. To make a long story short the non-diagnosis led to the pre-e turning into full blown toxemia. My advice to you (and myself, just pregnant with #3) is to keep track of your blood pressure closely for yourself and if you feel not right about something push the issue with your health care provider. This is something I didn't do for my first pregnancy and I paid for it.<br>
Good Luck and I hope to hear more suggestions from others on this because there's only so much gatoraide I can drink.
 

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My BP is always around 90/60 when pregnant, and while it makes me feel icky at times during pregnancy, I have never once had a problem with labor.<br><br>
Make sure you are staying very hydrated, dehydration can lead to lower blood pressue as well. My MW said nothing of exercise...if anything that makes me feel worse LOL. I don't think you have much to be concerned about, low blood pressure during pregancy is actually very common.
 

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I pretty much always have low bp (like 96/60) and I did not have any problems with dizziness or fainting in my very long/hard labor with my ds #1. My mother and grandmother have the same experinece also. I made sure to eat and drink during my labor so I think that helped.<br><br>
The only problem during pregnancy is every once in a while I do feel like I may pass out. After I lie down for a minute, drink some water, and eat a good portion of food I feel fine.
 

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Mine is low too ( low 90's / 60's) and at my last appt. I asked about my feet and hands falling asleep alot and my mow blood sugar ( 68 after two hours from eating) when she took my BP it was 78/52! I just need to drink more water, eat more protien with my healthy snack and stuff like that. I don't worry about labour, my body will take over.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks all for your input! Definitely helping to ease some of my anxieties. Sounds like keeping up food intake is the key - as well as salt! Luckily I'm a salt fiend already. I may ask about salt pills - I took them when I was rowing crew to keep my BP up.<br><br>
As an aside: don't know if it's true or not, but my acupuncturist told me that the original Gatorade was basically salt added to orange juice. I have since used that as a quick remedy when i'm feeling particularly woozy (i.e. after a ski or lots of exertion), and it seems to do the trick!
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>slgt</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/9988530"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">As an aside: don't know if it's true or not, but my acupuncturist told me that the original Gatorade was basically salt added to orange juice. I have since used that as a quick remedy when i'm feeling particularly woozy (i.e. after a ski or lots of exertion), and it seems to do the trick!</div>
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I have low BP too (usually 90/65 this pregnancy) and I remember drinking Gatorade really helped during labor with ds (which was long and hard).
 

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My blood pressure is low too (around 90/60) and I didn't have any problems during labour with DD, nobody even mentioned it!<br><br>
A lot of athletic women have very low blood pressure too. Mine was always pretty low, but when I started running, it got even lower.
 
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