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This Morning: Dr Chris discusses heart disease

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Healthcare professionals and scientists have spent centuries categorising and debating what constitutes “good health”. Over time, they have produced values as benchmarks that people should use as a guide. Any deviation from these values may suggest people have a health condition that needs addressing.

One of these ranges people should keep an eye on is beats per minute (BPM).

BPM studies the heartbeat and has target heart rates people should try to reach.

Charts for BPM document ten ideal heart rate ranges amongst age groups.

Each has a target zone of 50 to 85 percent of the maximum for their age and the documented average maximum rate.

Target heart rate zones and average maximum heart rate for the ten age groups work as follows:

20-year-olds

Target 50 to 85 percent: 100 to 170 beats per minute

Average maximum heart rate: 200 beats per minute

30-year olds

Target 50 to 85 percent: 95 to 162 beats per minute

Average maximum heart rate: 190 beats per minute

35-year-olds

Target 50 to 85 percent: 93 to 157 beats per minute

Average maximum heart rate: 185 beats per minute

40-year-olds

Target 50 to 85 percent: 90 to 153 beats per minute

Average maximum heart rate: 180 beats per minute

45-year-olds

Target 50 to 85 percent: 88 to 149 beats per minute

Average maximum heart rate: 175 beats per minute

50-year-olds

Target 50 to 85 percent: 85 to 145 beats per minute

Average maximum heart rate: 170 beats per minute

55-year-olds

Target 50 to 85 percent: 83 to 140 beats per minute

Average maximum heart rate: 170 beats per minute

60-year-olds

Target 50 to 85 percent: 80 to 136 beats per minute

Average maximum heart rate: 160 beats per minute

65-year-olds

Target 50 to 85 percent: 78 to 132 beats per minute

Average maximum heart rate: 155 beats per minute

70-year-olds

Target 50 to 85 percent: 75 to 128 beats per minute

Average maximum heart rate: 150 beats per minute

What conditions can cause your pulse to change?

Deviating heart rate above the ideal range causes a condition named tachycardia, while bradycardia looms at the opposite end of the scale.

Tachycardia indicates a heartbeat consistently above 100 beats per minute, often caused by heart disorders named arrhythmia.

If left to persist, tachycardia may result in heart failure, diet with coumadin stroke or death.

Symptoms of Tachycardia include:

  • Lightheadedness
  • Rapid pulse rate
  • Heart palpitations
  • Fainting
  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath

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Bradycardia indicates a consistent slow heartbeat lower than 60 beats per minute.

The condition means the heart is not pumping blood around the body fast enough.

Left to persist, people may experience sudden death, cardiac arrest, frequent fainting, or heart failure.

Not everyone will experience symptoms of or complications from the disorder, while others may need a pacemaker.

Symptoms of Bradycardia include:

  • Feeling faint or fainting
  • Fatigue
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest pain
  • Dizziness or lightheadedness
  • Getting quickly tired during physical activity
  • Confusion or memory issues

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