HIGH BLOOD pressure can be caused by a poor diet and lack of exercise, but suffering pain may be to blame.
Blood pressure – or hypertension – affects more than one in four people in the UK, and is responsible for around 75,000 deaths a year.
However, suffering pain may also play a role in increasing your reading.
Pain is one of the most common ailments in the UK, according to data released by LloydsPharmacy.
While it may seem isolated, pain can actually have an effect on other areas of your health – such as blood pressure.
“It has been found that acute pain can increase your blood pressure due to the increase in sympathetic nervous system activity,” explained Anshu Bhimbat, a pharmacist for LloydsPharmacy.
“However, this is not always the case with chronic pain.
“If you are concerned about high blood pressure as a result of pain, you should seek treatment which will not have a further adverse effect on this and should speak to a pharmacist first.”
For example, Bhimbat explained that paracetamol is less likely to increase blood pressure.
However, according to the Mayo Clinic, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and ibuprofen can have a negative effect.
There are an estimated seven million people in the UK who have undiagnosed hypertension, and many people still don’t know their reading.
Since high blood pressure does not usually show symptoms, abnormal readings are usually only spotted during routine tests for other issues.
If you are unsure whether you have high blood pressure, it can be a good idea to have it tested.
“LloydsPharmacy also offer free blood pressure checks which can be booked at your local pharmacy,” recommended Bhimbat.
“Following this, the pharmacist will be able to provide you with personalised advice on managing your blood pressure and managing medication and blood pressure.”
When it becomes very high it can start to trigger symptoms such as fatigue, blurred vision and chest pain.