At every age, it’s critical to understand what heart rate is healthy and typical. Your pulse, or heart rate, can help you detect serious health disorders that require medical attention, such as heart problems. However, as you get older, your natural resting heart rate changes. Learn more about heart rate measurements at every stage of your life in this guide.
What Heart Rate Measurement Is Too High?
In adults, a heart rate of greater than 100 beats per minute is considered excessive (tachycardia). Your heart rate generally rises when you walk fast, run, or participate in any strenuous physical exercise.
Your ideal heart rate and maximum heart rate are not the same thing. You should know your maximum heart rate and desired heart rate before performing any hard exercise, as these numbers vary based on your age. Exceeding your maximum heart rate is unhealthy, and your age determines your maximum heart rate. In general, subtracting your age from 220 yields your maximum heart rate.
When Your Heart Rate Is Above 100
A heart rate of more than 100 beats per minute is known as tachycardia. Tachycardia can be caused by a variety of abnormal heart rhythms (arrhythmias).
A rapid heart rate isn’t necessarily a cause for alarm, as your heart rate often speedds up during exercise or in response to stress.
There may be no symptoms or problems associated with tachycardia. Some types of tachycardia, if left untreated, can lead to major health concerns such as heart failure, stroke, or sudden cardiac death.
When Is a Heart Rate Measurement Too Low?
Bradycardia is characterized as a slower-than-normal heart rate. When adults are at rest, their hearts normally beat between 50 and 100 times per minute. If you have bradycardia, your heart beats less than 60 times per minute.
Bradycardia is a serious disorder in which the heart beats too slowly and is unable to provide the body with enough oxygen-rich blood. If this happens, you may feel dizzy, tired, or weak, as well as short of breath. Bradycardia can develop without presenting any signs or symptoms.
Slow heartbeats aren’t always a sign of impending danger. In certain people, such as healthy young adults and experienced athletes, a resting heart rate of 40 to 60 beats per minute is considered typical during sleep. So, if your heart rate dips below 40, you’re either exceptionally fit or, more likely, should schedule a check-up with your doctor.
If bradycardia is severe, a pacemaker inserted in the heart may be necessary to maintain a regular heartbeat.
What Heart Rate Indicates a Heart Attack?
Your heart rate can’t indicate an oncoming heart attack. It is possible for someone’s heart rate to increase or to remain steady during a heart attack. Consequently, a rapid heart rate is neither a sign nor an indicator of a heart attack.
When blood flow to the heart is limited or interrupted, a heart attack ensues, which is life-threatening. Heart rate fluctuates during a heart attack based on the person’s overall health, medication use, and any other medical difficulties they may be experiencing.
Some people will detect a spike in their heart rate during a heart attack, while others will not notice any change. Heart attack symptoms such as severe chest pain, shortness of breath, and tightness in the chest are among the most commonly experienced.
What Is a Normal Heart Rate?
At every age, it’s critical to understand what heart rate is healthy and typical. Your pulse can help you detect serious health disorders that require medical attention, such as heart problems. However, as you get older, your natural resting heart rate changes.
An adult’s normal resting heart rate ranges from 60 to 100 beats per minute (BPM), depending on their age and gender. On average, women’s heart rates are 2-7 BPM quicker than men’s.
In general, you want your resting heart rate to be as low as feasible. Men with heart rates above 90 and those below 80 were compared in a large, long-term study. Men with greater average heart rates had a chance of dying that was three times greater than those with lower heart rates.
A lower heart rate indicates greater consistent levels of activity and exercise than a higher heart rate. A good resting heart rate for a young, well-trained athlete can be as low as 40 beats per minute. A reliable heart rate monitor can help you track your heart rate while resting and during exertion.
When Does Heart Rate Increase Blood Pressure?
Your heart rate and blood pressure don’t rise and fall together at the same time. While your heart rate can safely climb to twice its resting level, your blood pressure will rise just a little at the same time. Even if your heart beats faster than normal, healthy blood vessels can expand to enhance blood flow. Your heart rate raises while you exercise, allowing more blood to reach your muscles.
While watches that monitor heart rate are relatively easy to find, smartwatches that measure blood pressure are less common, and also tend to be less accurate. Apple is testing blood pressure sensors currently, and this feature may be included as a fitness feature in the Apple Watch 8.
How Does Heart Rate Influence Cardiac Output?
Heart rate is likely the most straightforward indicator of cardiac output: the quicker the heart beats, the more blood can be pumped in a given amount of time, just as the quicker a cyclist pedals, the faster the bicycle will travel.
What Is a Healthy Resting Heart Rate?
A healthy heart rate varies from person to person, and it is determined by your age and the type of physical labor you undertake.
The chart below shows normal heart rates as a function of age.
|Age Range||Heart Rate (beats per min)|
|15 years +||60-100|
Remember: if you’re ever uncertain about whether your heart rate is normal, please see a doctor.
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