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More than often people ponder over "Can low blood pressure cause headaches" and the answer is yes. Any discrepancy in blood pressure can lead to a headache. Usually, low blood pressure ( hypotension) headaches are called orthostatic or are also called spontaneous intracranial hypotension (SIH).
What Is Low Blood Pressure?
A blood pressure count that's less than 90 millimeters of mercury (mm Hg) for the top number (systolic) or 60 mm Hg for the bottom number (diastolic) is usually called low blood pressure.
Symptoms Of Low Blood Pressure
People with low blood pressure go through the symptoms when BP drops lower than 90/60 and the symptoms consist of;
- Clammy skin
- Blurry vision
- Lack of attentiveness
While few feel them mildly few may feel them severely.
What Causes Low Blood Pressure?
At one point of time or the other everyone goes through a drop in blood pressure and often noticeable symptoms don't show up. Nevertheless, few conditions can lead to prolonged hypotension spells leading to the life-threatening stage if left not attended and such conditions include;
- Loss of heavy blood during injuries
- Damaged circulation due to defective heart valves or heart attacks
- Weakness and a condition of shock
- Anaphylactic shock, a severe type of allergic reaction
- Bloodstream infections
- Endocrine disorders like diabetes, thyroid, and adrenal insufficiency
Medications can even lead to a drop in blood pressure and such medications include medicines prescribed for heart disorders, antidepressants, and erectile dysfunction.
Few people may even get low blood pressure for reasons unknown and this is called chronic asymptomatic hypotension which is usually not harmful.
Can Low Blood Pressure Cause Headaches?
Yes, certainly low blood pressure leads to headaches, and for that instance, even high blood pressure too can lead to headaches. Two headache types that can arise due to changes in the pressure of the skull are called Low-pressure headaches (spontaneous intracranial hypotension, or SIH) and high-pressure headaches (idiopathic intracranial hypertension, or IIH). The main cause of SIH is the leakage of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF).
More than often SIH increases when one sits or stands and can get better when one lies. This low-pressure headache begins at the head's back and may also be associated with neck pain although it can be sensed all over the head. This condition worsens when one sneeze, coughs, or exerts. It can also be seen with these symptoms;
- Ringing in the ears
- Muffled hearing
- Dizziness low blood pressure
Treatment For Low Blood Pressure Headaches
The symptoms and headaches out of this cause will go away on their own. Drinking enough water, resting, and taking caffeine will help. When these don't work it is advised to consult the doctor and a doctor may go for an epidural blood patch which helps in stopping the CSF leak. A doctor may even suggest theophylline- a medicine.
How To Raise Low Blood Pressure?
- Drinking more water
- Having more salt
- Medicines such as midodrine and fludrocortisone
- Wearing compression stockings
- Eating a balanced diet in lesser quantities
- Limiting alcohol
- Checking blood sugar levels and thyroid as these can also lead to hypotension
Foods To Eat With Low Blood Pressure
Certain foods can help increase blood pressure, including;
- Low carb foods
- Foods rich in vitamin B12 like meat, eggs, milk products, fortified breakfast cereals, and few nutritional yeast edibles
- Foods that are rich in folates like dark leafy green vegetables, nuts, fruits, beans, eggs, meat, seafood, poultry, and grains.
Side Effects Of Low Blood Pressure
Although hypotension can never be a problem when attended to properly extreme hypotension can trigger life-threatening conditions and the side effects include;
- Shallow, rapid breathing
- Confusion, particularly in older people
- Cold, sweaty, pale skin
- Weak and speedy pulse
- Low blood pressure anemia
At times low blood pressure high pulse can also be seen and this happens when electrical circuits of the heart don't function properly.
Risk factors such as age, medicines, and certain diseases like Parkinson's disease may increase the chances of falling prey to hypotension. And also remember that there are many types of hypotension such as Orthostatic, Postprandial, Neurally mediated, and so on. More than often the answer to can low blood pressure causes headaches is yes, however, there's nothing to worry about if you act quickly.