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Can High Blood Pressure Cause Headaches?

Aug 02, 2022

Primary Care

Can High Blood Pressure Cause Headaches?

Headaches are common, but they may often disrupt your daily life. Have you ever thought "can high blood pressure cause headaches?" A headache and other symptoms may occur if blood pressure gets dangerously high.

Read on to learn more about the relationship between headaches and high blood pressure.

What Is the Scientific Consensus?

According to research done by American Heart Association (AHA), headaches aren’t a symptom of high blood pressure, except in the case of hypertensive crisis. During a hypertensive crisis, pressure in the skull rises as a result of your blood pressure suddenly increasing to dangerously high levels. The resultant headache is unlike any other headache. Aspirin and other traditional headache remedies are unsuccessful in relieving pain.

When Does High Blood Pressure Cause Headaches?

There is a chance that you may have headaches and other symptoms if your blood pressure spikes suddenly to unusually high levels. In case you have a sudden and intense hypertension headache, you should immediately seek medical attention as this may be the sign of a bigger issue, like a stroke.

What Does a Headache Caused by an Increase in Blood Pressure Feel Like?

Currently, no significant research shows that a headache caused by a blood pressure rise feels any different from a typical headache. There are also situations where headaches can elevate blood pressure.

Depending on how the increase in blood pressure affects your body, you may also experience the following symptoms in addition to a headache:

  • Blurred vision
  • Shortness of breath
  • Nausea
  • Chest pain

Treatments for Hypertensive Headaches

Hypertensive headaches treatments vary based on severity and blood pressure values. Sometimes headaches due to hypertension can be so severe they are called hypertensive emergency. This condition frequently needs blood pressure regulation using IV medications and hospitalization. When just having headaches associated with non-hypertension emergency episodes, often the treatment of hypertension in the outpatient setting can resolve the symptoms.

Here are some of the different IV medications that are often used in the hospital:

  • Nicardipine
  • Sodium nitroprusside
  • Labetalol

While oral blood pressure medications are used for outpatient management.

When to See a Doctor

In case you have frequent headaches, you should determine the cause immediately. If you have high blood pressure building in your skull area, call a doctor right away. This can be a potential sign of hypertensive crisis and must be addressed immediately.

High blood pressure is usually a reason for concern, but frequent and persistent headaches can be as well. Whether or not you feel high blood pressure is a direct cause of your headaches, you should still consult with a doctor about your symptoms.

Consult With MI Express Primary Care

The combination of high blood pressure and headaches can be a bad sign. If you are looking for primary care or have a very painful headache contact our team of experts here at MI Express Primary Care in Canton, MI. Our doctors will provide immediate care and treatment for your condition.

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