Your blood pressure is the force your blood exerts against your arteries as it travels through. High blood pressure is a significant health problem that can lead to many medical complications and other diseases, including life-threatening ones such as stroke and heart disease. Many people mistakenly think that high blood pressure causes you to feel hot. Unfortunately, though, one of the reasons why high blood pressure is so dangerous is because it often displays no symptoms, leaving it to wreak havoc on the body without the individual ever knowing.
What Are the Most Common Symptoms of High Blood Pressure?
Most of the time, there are no symptoms of high blood pressure. In most cases, high blood pressure is considered the “silent killer” because it is primarily symptomless and can cause severe complications without ever alerting someone that it is there.
That being said, there are some symptoms that may be indirectly related to high blood pressure, but you should not assume that everyone with high blood pressure has these symptoms.
Facial flushing refers to the dilation of the blood vessels in the face. There are many reasons why the face may flush, including environmental triggers such as cold weather, sun exposure, wind, or spicy woods, or emotional stress, exercise, alcohol consumption, or exposure to heat or hot water. All of these situations may also raise blood pressure temporarily.
However, it is important to note that while your face may flush while blood pressure is higher than usual, high blood pressure is not the cause of facial flushing.
Dizziness is a possible side effect of some types of blood pressure medication, but it is not caused by high blood pressure. However, high blood pressure is a leading risk factor for a stroke, and one of the warning signs of a stroke is sudden dizziness or loss of balance or coordination. So, this symptom, especially its sudden onset, should not be ignored.
Blood Spots in the Eyes
While blood spots in the eyes are more common in those with high blood pressure or diabetes, neither one of these conditions causes the blood spots. However, untreated high blood pressure can cause damage to the optic nerve, which an eye doctor can detect.
So, while these three symptoms are not due to high blood pressure, they may be related to it.
The other symptoms which people often associate with high blood pressure include:
- difficulty sleeping
However, it’s highly likely that these symptoms are not due to high blood pressure.
Does High Blood Pressure Make You Hot and Sweaty?
It’s a popular myth that high blood pressure causes someone to feel hot and sweaty, but it is not true. As stated previously, most individuals with high blood pressure do not have any symptoms.
However, sweating can be a sign of low blood pressure in some situations, so unexplained sweating should be checked by a doctor.
Sweating serves as a way for the body to cool itself down. Since high blood pressure does not increase the body’s temperature, so there is no need for the body to compensate through sweating to bring down its temperature.
Some people may think that high blood pressure causes facial flushing, and since people can flush because they are hot, they may believe that high blood pressure is the cause. However, while facial flushing may occur if blood pressure is temporarily more elevated than normal, high blood pressure is not the cause of facial flushing.
What Other Medical Conditions Can Make You Feel Hot and Sweaty?
There are many reasons why you may be feeling hot and sweaty. Here are some possibilities:
- a side effect of medication
- anxiety or stress
- an inability to sweat (anhidrosis)
- multiple sclerosis
- increasing age
As you can see, there are many different reasons why you may be feeling hot and sweaty, besides the heat or exercising. If you are feeling hot and sweaty and aren’t sure why, check with your doctor to see if they can help you figure out the cause.
When To See a Doctor?
If you are feeling hot and sweaty for no explainable reason, and it does not appear to be going away, check with a doctor to see if there is a medical explanation.
In addition, if you are experiencing severe headaches or nosebleeds, you will want to call emergency services as this may be a sign of a hypertensive crisis, which is a medical emergency that occurs when blood pressure is higher than 180/120 mmHg. If you have a severe headache or nosebleed, and you can check your blood pressure and find it above this range, wait five minutes and retest. If you are still getting a reading of 180/120 mmHg or higher, wait no longer to seek emergency medical help.
Any other severe symptoms such as shortness of breath, chest pain, or visual difficulty also warrant a call to emergency services in order to receive immediate treatment.
Get Help from an Online Doctor
An online doctor can help you determine if you feel hot and sweaty due to another health condition, and can help you determine what to do next.
The truth is that many health conditions may have unexplainable sweating as symptoms, and so an online doctor, such as those at DrHouse, offers you an option to go over possible causes, all while in the comfort of your own home.
High blood pressure is a dangerous condition that often has no symptoms, earning it the nickname of the “silent killer”. Many symptoms which many people believe are due to high blood pressure, such as facial flushing, feeling hot and sweaty, dizziness, and blood spots in the eyes, are not actually due to high blood pressure, but they may be related.
That being said, if you feel hot and sweaty, there are many different conditions that can have that as a symptom, so it is best to talk to a doctor to determine the cause. An online doctor is an excellent option for getting a medical opinion in an easy and fast way.
- Why am I always hot? 10 common causes. (2021). https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/why-am-i-always-hot#summary
- What are the Symptoms of High Blood Pressure?. (2021). https://www.heart.org/en/health-topics/high-blood-pressure/why-high-blood-pressure-is-a-silent-killer/what-are-the-symptoms-of-high-blood-pressure
DrHouse articles are written by MDs, NPs, nutritionists and other healthcare professionals. The contents of the DrHouse site are for informational purposes only and are not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you are experiencing high fever (>103F/39.4C), shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, chest pain, heart palpitations, abnormal bruising, abnormal bleeding, extreme fatigue, dizziness, new weakness or paralysis, difficulty with speech, confusion, extreme pain in any body part, or inability to remain hydrated or keep down fluids or feel you may have any other life-threatening condition, please go to the emergency department or call 911 immediately.