Hypertension, also called high blood pressure, occurs when the force of the blood flow inside the arteries is elevated.
Some people experience headaches when their blood pressure is elevated, which has caused many doctors and researchers to tie hypertension to the headaches. However, hypertension hasn’t been definitely linked to headaches.
Hypertension often doesn’t cause symptoms for years, which is why it’s called the silent killer. It can cause a range of disorders and symptoms, such as:
- Heart disease
- Heart attack
- Dull headaches
High blood pressure is very common and uncontrolled, it can be deadly. In some people, it can be controlled by a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, but low in salt, red meat, fat, sweets and sugared drinks. In some people, hypertension can be caused by kidney problems, defects in blood vessels, certain medications, adrenal gland tumors or certain illegal drugs.
Hypertension is more common among older people, smokers, African Americans and people who are overweight. It tends to run in families and is made worse by stress, alcohol and being sedentary.
Untreated high blood pressure can damage several of the body’s organs, which could cause headache.
Headaches and high pressure
Severe headaches may be a sign of dangerously high blood pressure.
When high blood pressure arises suddenly and rapidly, it is called malignant hypertension and is a medical emergency. It happens in about 1 percent of people of all ages. This disorder occurs most often in African-American men, younger adults and women with toxemia of pregnancy, which is pregnancy-induced high blood pressure.
Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension
High blood pressure in the skull that leads to headaches almost every day. It usually occurs in women of childbearing age and more commonly in obese women. Other symptoms include nausea, obscured vision, double vision and throbbing noise in the ears.
Severely elevated blood pressure can lead to brain swelling, which can also result in worsening headache, nausea and vomiting, drowsiness, confusion, seizures and even coma.