If you are feeling tired, dizzy or have headaches all the time, you might be suffering from high blood pressure. High BP is called the silent killer, because many symptoms are ignored or not felt until it is too late.

  • What does high blood pressure mean?

Hypertension occurs over a period of years. High BP occurs when the force against your artery walls are increased. This causes your blood flow to act up. Your BP is measured by comparing the amount of blood your heart pumps to the amount of blood flow resistance.

HBP can hinder your blood flow by weakening your arteries and making them narrower. This can result in kidney failure, stroke, heart attack, blindness and other health concerns. You can have high BP without any symptoms. However, the causes for high BP can act as red flags to help you determine if you might have hypertension. Some causes include stress, pregnancy, huge salt consumption, obesity, anxiety and use of tobacco and alcohol.

  • What causes high systolic blood pressure?

Systolic BP is the amount of force that is created by the heart contractions pushing blood through the arteries so that blood can flow to the rest of your body. High systolic BP is referred to as isolated systolic hypertension. It occurs when the diastolic number is below 90, but the systolic number is measured above 140. There are two possible causes for this. One is that you might have a leaky heart valve. The other reason is that you might have an overactive thyroid.

  • Can anxiety cause high blood pressure?

If you suffer from chronic anxiety, your chances of developing high blood pressure increases. For example, if your chronic anxiety causes you to feel fear at all times, your body will respond by increasing your heart rate. High BP is caused by the increase of heart contractions.

Note that regular anxiety that you feel does not cause HBP.

  • Alcohol and high blood pressure

Heavy alcohol drinking can temporarily increase your BP. You are drinking heavily if you have three drinks in one sitting. If you binge drink regularly, temporary HBP can become chronic. If you do have chronic hypertension, you need to delete alcohol from your diet. Be careful when you wing yourself off of alcohol. You can feel anxiety or stress that can worsen your hypertension. It is best to wing yourself by starting with moderation until the alcohol is deleted from your diet.