Unexpected Warning Signs of High Blood Pressure You Need to Watch Out For

You’re probably familiar with having your blood pressure checked at the doctor’s office. That Velcro armband tightens around your bicep and you pray that the number isn’t too high. But did you know you can also tell if your blood pressure is high without setting foot in a doctor’s office?

Some unexpected symptoms signal blood pressure trouble. Not sure what they are? That’s where we come in.

A heartbeat in your ear

Tensed mature woman sitting in bed.

A symptom you should never ignore. | Wavebreakmedia/iStock/Getty Images

Tinnitus is a common and usually harmless condition in which you hear noise, sometimes a clicking or whooshing, in one or both of your ears. But blood vessel disorder pulsatile tinnitus can cause you to hear your heartbeat in your ears. Mayo Clinic explains that high blood pressure, or hypertension, can trigger this sensation, and can be exacerbated by stress, caffeine, or alcohol. Your best bet is to contact your doctor if you’re experiencing these symptoms.


A woman with a headache or dizziness in her office.

Watch out for this type of dizziness. | Gpointstudio/iStock/Getty Images

Dizzy spells by themselves are not signs of high blood pressure. They can, however, clue you in that your blood pressure has gone untreated for too long. The American Heart Association explains that hypertension puts you at risk of having a stroke, which can be preceded by headaches, blurred vision, and frequent dizzy spells.

Swollen feet

A woman wearing black high heels at a park.

Ask your doctor about your swollen feet. | Javi_indy/iStock/Getty Images

The feet are awful far away from the heart. But excess fluid build up, called edema, can potentially be connected to heart problems. Your feet may swell as a result of hypertension, and can worsen in the instance of congestive heart failure and blood clots.

Sensitivity to salt

Centered on the table are a sugar and salt shaker.

One reason to reduce the sodium content in your foods. | Mitchrice/iStock/Getty Images

Salt sensitivity is a tricky sign since half of the population can have it. However, as the National Center for Biotechnology Information discusses, salt intake is one of the most common environmental risk factors for blood pressure. You should be extra aware of your salt intake if you or someone in your family has hypertension. Adding sodium to this condition can manifest into even worse problems.


A man checks his glucose levels.

Your lifestyle can completely change. | iStock.com

Diabetes damages and hardens your arteries, making you susceptible to many cardiovascular problems. High blood pressure bordering on hypertension caused by diabetes can manifest into blood vessel problems and heart attack. To make matters worse, some blood pressure medications can negatively impact your blood sugar levels. (A major problem for diabetics.)

Nausea and vomiting

A sick man lies down on a sofa.

Make note of your symptoms. | iStock.com

In the most severe case, horribly high blood pressure leads to hypertensive crisis. This can be life-threatening, or lead to debilitating health problems. In the instance that the body goes into hypertensive crisis, you may experience extreme nausea and vomiting, among other terrifying symptoms such as seizure and becoming unresponsive.


A woman leans over a balcony of an apartment.

An important reason to talk to your doctor about anxiety.  | Rawpixel Ltd/iStock/Getty Images

No surprise here — anxiety can shoot your blood pressure through the roof. If you have a history of high blood pressure and are experiencing symptoms of anxiety, contact your doctor immediately so your blood pressure doesn’t get wildly out of hand.