Usually, a reading of 140/90 is considered full-blown hypertension, so I'm surprised that the nurse said it was in the "normal" range. A reading of 140/88 would be in the "high normal" range and the "pre-hypertensive range." In young people as yourself, they seem to find that a higher diastolic (bottom number) reading- one over 90, that is- is more severe. Maybe you don't even have high BP, and you just have what is called "white coat hypertension," meaning that your BP shoots up in doctor's offices because you're anxious. I would get it checked again just to be on the safe side. Perhaps try one of the self-testers at a supermarket, and if the results are still on the high side, talk to your doctor. Good luck and God bless!
"Not everything that steps out of line, and thus 'abnormal,' must necessarily be 'inferior.'"
A reading of 140 systolic OR diastolic of 90 is considered hypertension. Usually, though, the doctor would want there to be two or three readings this high before declaring it hypertension. Have you had previous BP readings with this doctor before? If so, were they lower? My suggestion would be to get your own BP monitor and test your pressure at home at rest. Record your readings and take the readings with you to the doctor next time if your average is less than systolic 140 or diastolic 90. Otherwise, there is a very strong possibility he/she will put you on BP meds.
Optimal blood pressure according to the newest idea is 115/75. Some doctors try to medicate down to that level. Some don't start medicating until the 140 or 90 are reached. Many will consider other risk factors, like family history of CVD, before deciding where between those two points they should start medicating. If I were you, I'd do some reading about all this blood pressure information and decide for yourself where you think is a valid point to start medicating for high blood pressure in your case. That way, you'll be prepared for future discussions with your doctor.
Like Gatsby said, "white coat syndrome" is pretty common. When I went to see the doctor last week, my systolic was 161 before I saw the doctor and 181 afterwards! Yet my systolic in home readings have been in the 130s lately. In my case, part of the difference was that they didn't let me sit down and relax a few minutes before they took the BP, they took it as soon as I walked in and as soon as I walked out of the exam room and into the area where they are set up for BP readings. But no way am I going to let them medicate me on the basis of office readings like that. I'd be a zombie at home!
Gatsby and Uff-Da have given you some good answers. Hopefully you were just nervous in the doctor's office. You should have some other readings taken and see if the numbers stay that high. Before you run out and buy a monitor, you might try taking your blood pressure in various pharmacies or grocery stores, or where ever they have public use monitors. If these all give readings similar to what you got at the doctor's then buy a monitor for yourself and record your home resting blood pressure readings. Be sure to keep a record of your results.
For your height, you are not overweight, according to the Body Mass Indicator (BMI). If you were over 200 pounds (14 stone), then I'd suggest losing weight and see if that lowers your blood pressure.
You don't have a problem yet. But for a 23 year old person who was not overweight, I'd expect a lower resting blood pressure. You may want to think about reducing the salt in the food you eat, if you regularly eat a lot of salty food, if your numbers really are what you got at the doctor's. You also may want to think about starting an exercise program if you aren't active, since that can also reduce your blood pressure.
Thanks to all for the advice. I don't remember feeling that nervous in the doctors surgery, but who knows, may have been subconscious. I'll try and monitor my blood pressure from now on to see if it it genuinely is that high so I can act accordingly to lower it.
It's got me wondering though whether there's something else going on in my body as I've got a few other health issues that could be related.
When the temperature starts climbing above 25 degrees celcius I can easily start sweating. Or even with the mildest of exercise, e.g. after a half a mile walk I can often be sweating quite badly. Which tends to be the reason I avoid exercise because I'm usually drowned in sweat by the end of it compared to how other people perspire.
I've got quite oily and greasy skin which takes a lot of looking after to prevent acne style breakouts.
My pulse often fluctuates, but the lowest resting pulse is around the 88 bpm mark but I've also taken my resting pulse when it's been nearer to 100 bpm. Again the mildest of exercise can cause that to really jump. As an example my resting pulse was just 88. I then walked to the bottom of the stairs and back up again, not particularly strenuous and my pulse shot straight up to 100 bpm and took a short while to settle back to the high 80's mark.
I'm receding and thinning more than I'd like. I put this down to MPB but if there's some health problem accelerating it I'd like to get to the bottom of it!
I remember when I sweat like a pig wenever the temperature was a little high or I exerted myself and I cursed my oily, OILY skin. Enjoy them, Craig, they are signs of good health. An oily skin is a a smooth supple skin that doesn't last forever. And sweating is nature's way of regulating temperature and removing excess salts and toxins.
You'll think fondly on it the first time you feel you need a moisturizer!
Same with heartrate...it will naturally slow with age. Good conditioning exercises will lower it also but there's nothing to worry about at 88 BPM.
I can't think of any immediate family members with known thyroid problems. Reading up my symptoms all do seem to point to an overactive thyroid so I'm going to book an appointment with a doctor and persuade him to give me a blood test.