What is Hypertension?
In a nutshell, Hypertension is the medical term for high blood pressure. This high blood pressure refers to the pressure the blood is putting against the walls of the blood vessel or vein. This is measured or controlled by cardiac output and blood vessel resistance.
Excessively high blood pressure can lead to tinnitus or ringing in the ears. Though Pulsatile tinnitus can be a general indication that there may be problems.
This is because high blood pressure can be the result of a narrowing vein or indeed a kink in a neck artery that is perhaps leading to a partial blockage.
This obstruction can in turn lead to a rushing or pulsing sound in the ears as the blood strains to pass the obstacle. This sound is a general indication of pulsatile tinnitus.
Hypertension as it is called, can be caused by several factors including diet, medication, or indeed lifestyle choices such as smoking or excessive alcohol.
How is it defined?
Hypertension can be diagnosed when blood pressure of the individual is higher than 140 over 90 mmHg (millimetres of mercury).
High blood pressure can be the result, and an early indication of other medical problems such as kidney disease, and can also be associated with medication.
Fatty or processed foods that have an excess of salt can lead to high blood pressure. If this is coupled with a lack of exercise or physical activity, then you may have the ‘perfect storm’ leading to hypertension.
Similar to the effects of stress when applied to tinnitus, hypertension which is caused or at least heightened by smoking, alcohol, diet, medication etc; can be an indication of a medical problem or a warning that a healthier lifestyle must be adopted – or both!
Along with the possible causes listed above, you must also be aware that age itself can play a part in high blood pressure. As we get older arteries may harden or even partially block (high cholesterol?). Either way If you suspect that you have high blood pressure, possibly indicated by dizzy spells or a rushing sound in your ears, then it is imperative you visit your doctor for a full diagnosis.
Bear in mind however that hypertension can be asymptomatic, which means that you may not even be aware of it. For this reason, it is known as the ‘silent killer,’ as it can cause a lot of damage to the cardiovascular system without the patient even knowing there is a problem.
Can hypertension cause tinnitus?
Well as a result of increased pressure through the neck arteries, it can certainly result in the rushing sounds known to pulsatile tinnitus sufferers. But even without the ‘rushing sound,’ high blood pressure can lead to other noises such as whining or squeeling – equally unpleasant!
With that in mind I believe it is safe to say that high blood pressure may result in tinnitus – but that may be the least of your problems until a proper medical diagnosis is carried out to asertain first of all if you have HBP, and if you have – then what is the cause? And indeed what you should do about it.