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Headaches and High Blood Pressure



Headaches and High Blood Pressure
If you have headaches very often, then you are at the risk of having high blood pressure. Read on to find out more on the relation between headaches and high blood pressure
In high blood pressure, the pressure exerted by blood on the arterial walls increases. When the heart contracts, blood is pumped in the blood vessels. This contraction is known as systolic blood pressure, which is always more. When the heart expands, the pressure exerted by blood is less, and it is called diastolic. A person having 120/80mmHg (systolic/diastolic) blood pressure is said to have a normal blood pressure whereas blood pressure above 140/90mmHg is termed as high blood pressure. Symptoms of high blood pressure usually go unnoticed. Hence high blood pressure is widely known as the 'silent killer'. There are no warnings as such, before your heart is literally attacked with a ruthless stroke. People always associate headaches with high blood pressure. Are headaches and high blood pressure really related to each other? Let's find out.

Headaches and High Blood Pressure: Stress is one common factor causing headaches and high blood pressure. Ninety per cent headaches are caused due to stress, also known as tension headaches, whereas headaches are known to be one of the major symptoms of high blood pressure. As much as 90 per cent of the people in the world experience headache at some point or other, so we can't say for sure that everyone of them has high blood pressure. But frequently occurring severe headaches and high blood pressure are definitely related. Most headaches originate from the blood vessels in the tissues situated in the skull. High blood pressure causes constriction of these blood vessels which is a major reason for headaches. This might be the inter-relating factor between headaches and high blood pressure.

Morning Headaches and High Blood Pressure: People experiencing severe morning headaches are known to have high blood pressure. Morning headaches are mostly caused due to lack of sleep, improper sleeping position and stress. Or the reason may be quite simple, you may be having a snoring partner! Morning headaches and high blood pressure are also common in alcoholics. Depression causes both morning headaches and high blood pressure. As you can see stress, depression, alcohol, morning headaches and high blood pressure all go hand in hand. If you are experiencing severe headaches then you should set the alarm bells ringing. So don't ignore your headache, if you wake up with one everyday. Go and get your blood pressure checked.

Cluster Headaches and High Blood Pressure: Cluster headaches are severe headaches which recur over a period of time. Cluster headaches occur due to abnormalities in the facial nerves. They are like migraine; they occur in attacks which may last for few minutes to few hours. They are caused due to allergies, stress, excessive smoking and drinking. High blood pressure can worsen cluster headaches. Read more on Cluster Headache: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment.

Headaches and High Blood Pressure During Pregnancy: About 8 per cent women suffer from high blood pressure during pregnancy. Doctors advice a routine blood pressure check after 20 weeks of pregnancy. After six months of pregnancy, a pregnant women pumps one liter of extra blood everyday which is likely to increase blood pressure. Headache is one of the symptoms of high blood pressure during pregnancy. High blood pressure in pregnancy can affect the baby's health, so regular check ups are necessary. If your headaches are severe and recurring, followed by vomiting and blurred vision, you must call the doctor.

Malignant hypertension is a severe form of high blood pressure that damages the inner linings of blood vessels causing organ failure. The eyes along with the kidneys and brain are the most susceptible organs. Malignant hypertension may cause a swelling to the optic nerve behind the eye, which causes blinding headache. Severe headache is a prime symptom of malignant hypertension.

It has been observed over decades that people with high blood pressure suffer from severe headaches very frequently. But the fact that all morning headaches and cluster headaches are caused due to hypertension is incorrect. Most of the times, causes of headaches may not be serious. It may be due to simple reasons like dehydration or staying hungry for a long time. According to doctors, common headaches may not be due to high blood pressure, as there are many other factors causing it. But the bottom line is, if you are regularly experiencing severe headaches and dizziness along with nausea, you should consult a doctor at the earliest. It's better to be safe than sorry.