Anxiety and high blood pressure

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Hi I was wondering how may people have high blood pressure with anxiety. When I'm relaxed my bp is normally 130/78. If I'm anxious it can easily go up to 180/90 it's pretty scary! If I can relax it takes about 2 mins to go back to around 140/80.

With my anxiety this worries me the most I'm on BP medication which keeps it check most of the time with some awful side effects.

I've had all the tests done over the years which have all been good. My GP assures me my anxiety does this to me and it's nothing to worry about. Unfortunately when all this started 5 years ago I googled high BP and over 180 is an hypertensive crisis and you should immediately go to the hospital.

When I had my first panic attack 5 years ago which started this madness my BP was 230/110/150 it was the worst day of my life.

Over the years my anxiety has sometimes just vanished and at one stage went for about 8 months. Lately it has come back. I can handle everything about it the pain/ palpitations dizziness feeling awful. Buts it the high blood pressure that worries me. I had a complete medical as recent as 3 weeks ago which was fine for my age 57.

Do other people have Blood pressure issues with their anxiety?

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  • Edited

    hi mark im 58 have been suffering with anxiety and hbp for nearly 2 years now.i suffered from long term stress which lead to my hbp. im on bp medication now with horrid side effects mostly on and off dizziness and an off balance feeling.i dont know if my anyiety lead to hbp or the other way round. im going thru a bad patch these last 2 months and my bp has been up and down .may i ask what side effects do u have from the bp medication?
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    • Posted

      Hi Elaine yes my bp can be all over the place too. Although I think now I have become a bit obsessed with it which is making it worse. I admit I sometimes check it 20 times a day which is stupid. Of course it fluctuates naturally and I think my over checking makes it worse as I get anxious thinking about! My GP lets me bring my numbers in from home I get awful white coat syndrome.

      I'm on a twin dose one tablet medication I don't know if we are allowed to give brand names.

      My side effects are abdominal pain/ back pain dizziness and Ibs type symptoms and a general feeling of being unwell. These vary in intensity. I just don't know if it is from the medication or my anxiety intensifying them. This has been ongoing for 5 years I believe all this came from a stressful job I had for twenty years which led to a breakdown in my health.

      My GP says to stick with them as they keep my bp down. In the back of my mine I feel like they are harming me if that makes sense?

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    • Posted

      Mark I have the exact same issues as you do. I completely panic when I even take my BP at home. I'm been on BP meds since I was in my early 20's and I'm now 40. When I have these high episodes my BP is usually around 185/110. I normally take another half of a BP pill and a half of a Clonazepam. Usually within 20 to 30 minutes it drops to about 145/90's. This makes my body really weak afterwards and takes a lot out of me.

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    • Posted

      Hi Sarah,

      I've had similar blood pressure spikes and like yourself took an extra bp pill, and like yourself within 20-30 minutes my bp dropped toward normal. The question I asked myself was it really pill that dropped my bp so fast, or was it just the way these spikes worked -- or even was it the placebo effect. I speculated that it might not be the pill, so the last time it happened, I did nothing, just sat down and chilled out. Sure enough 20-30 minutes my bp was back down to normal. Something you may want to think about.

      Jim

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    • Edited

      Hi Sarah,

      I have been dealing with high blood pressure, and anxiety. When I go to the doctor my BP spikes. She has increased my meds twice. Now I am so afraid it's going to be high when taking it at home I panic. This is a terrible feeling. I was happy when I found this site, because my family just does not understand.

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    • Posted

      I think the more you take your bp at home, the more relaxed you will become. You might start taking it every hour or so just to get used to it. A good doctor should be supportive of home monitoring in cases of white coat syndrome. If your doctor is not, time to look for another one. You want to be on the correct dose of bp medicine, not on a dose based on an elevated reading due to anxiety.

      Jim

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    • Posted

      Hi Sarah,

      I have the same issues with anxiety and bp. I have a bp machine at home now, but I too get very stressed when I use it. I wouldn't wish this on anyone, but it is nice to know I'm not alone. Thanks for helping me get some perspective. 

      Mark

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    • Edited

      i know this is an old post but i need to get this out. Was at doctor in May BP 156/80. She wasnt happy but let it ride. went to her PA in June and BP was the same. went yesterday to doctor and BP was 146/90. Now she wants to put me on enlarpril BP medication and i am so not a medicine person. long story short since yesterday i have been stressing about taking it and my anxiety is in overdrive and my heart pounding that i can feel it all over. i am thinking i am going to have a stroke or heart attack but am more afraid of taking the medication. i was fine all these months knowing my pressure was high but one mention of medication and i am a wreck

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  • Edited

    Severe anxiety can cause high blood pressure. Whenever i get a panic attack my blood pressure sky rockets. I one time had a blood pressure of 119/90 sad i looked it up and it said prehypertension or hypertension stage 1 and i freaked out. When i went to the doctor i had a bp of 133/89. I looked it up and said prehypertension. I guess it was because i was nervous at the time. But yes i have blood pressure issues with my anxiety and im only 17! But i dont have high blood pressure all the time from what i know. I get a lot of things.. Pvcs, high blood pressure, burning chest pain, shortness of breath, dizziness, feeling faint.. Etc etc.

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    • Posted

      Hi Christina I think your BP is fine and any rise in your case is definitely anxiety. Mine however raises to scary levels I've seen 190/98 at home! When anxious. It goes back to normal levels very quickly though. I hate anxiety and what it can do to us. I get the dizness lightheadness and feeling like you are going to faint. This had led me to the ER numerous times with dozens of tests with normal results.

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    • Posted

      The reason why i worry is because... My mom has hypertension.. Her blood pressure without meds could be 150/116 😨 She takes blood pressure meds and shes fine. She even had to go for a stress test because i was stressing her out all summer due to my health anxiety . It came back normal but im still scared for her and myself! Because since she has it im more at risk of having hypertension sad

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    • Posted

      Hi I think you are fine. Anxiety does horrible things to us. I have had this for over 5 years now and in the beginning I thought it was all over for me I felt so bad. I went to the ER several times like a frightened child sat there the whole day getting tests done and everything is fine. I went as recent as 2 months ago wasted a whole day putting myself through awful stress sending my BP through the roof.

      I guess what I'm trying to say is I'm not dead yet and it's been five years of tests and worry for nothing.

      Unfortunately for me and your mum BP does rise as we get older. It's the only thing that freaks me out. I hope you have a nice GP who is understanding of anxiety problems mine is great. I hope you feel better😊

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    • Posted

      Thanks Mark. High blood pressure actually isnt my MAIN concern.. Although it did seem pretty high those days. My main concern is actually long qt syndrome. And yes my GP usually are very good. But sometimes i feel like they rush ... I've been going to the same doctor ever since i was literally a baby.

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    • Posted

      No, over the summer ive had five ecgs and they all came back normal. I never had a holter monitor before which is what a lot of these people do. But no one in my family has ever died from a sudden cardiac arrest, no one in my family had episodes of syncope without warning, we dont have any history of cardaic arrythmias in our family. Like atrial fibrillation, supraventricular tachycardia, ventricular tachycardia, atrial flutter, etc etc. I never fainted during excersise, never had any seizures.. Only cardiac arrythmia i have is premature ventricular contractions. I have no family history of ANY heart problems whatsoever. My mom had a stress test recently and it came out fine. My dad never had any issues with his heart, niether did my mom. My mom passed out once but she had early warning signs and she didnt eat breakfast that day. Long qt syndrome fainting often occurs without warning. My grandma is currently 74, and never ever had problems with her heart or fainted from what ive known.

      Its just very scary tho because this genetic mutation is often asymptomatic and sometimes the first symptom is DEATH. Which scared me so much!!! Long qt syndrome could even be present in normally structured hearts!! Which scares me even more. This disorder can lead to torsades de pointes and ventricular fibrillation. Which are both deadly! Ive read stories where people would have normal ecgs but then later on they drop dead and then it turns out they DO have LQTS. I cant go see an EP. Its not an option for me. My parents already told me no more doctors and i dont want to give them hard time. This is also a reason why i come on here. Because i feel like i have no one else to talk to and everyone seems to be getting annoyed by this whole thing sad i just dont want to drop dead unexpectedly! Thats my main fear.

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    • Edited

      Hi Cristina I think you are fine. Lots of illnesses are like that when things get missed or they happen we can't explain it. You are young enjoy your life we get old quick. I'm angry at the last five years I've wasted being anxious. I'm trying to accept my symptoms and just live with them. They come and go several times a day. I know I can think about pains and they suddenly appear. When my panic is at its worse I take half an Ativan and 20 mins later they almost dissapear. I guess it shows to me it is anxiety.

      I'm glad I found this forum in that people all over the world are having similar problems with anxiety and you are not alone. Take care😄

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    • Posted

      LQTS is rare, it is identifiable by ECG, and you can get genetic testing to see if you have it. I have a lot of health related anxiety, but if LQTS is what you worry about, please don't. If you're really concerned by a defibrillator, a Kardia, a printer, a pair of calipers, and a book on the basics of ECGs. No one in your family has any history of cardiac problems, consider yourself lucky, it makes it even less likely that you would. Some medications can prolong the QRS complex, but still very rare. We are talking about less than a percent. So imagine yourself in a room will 100 people, it is so unlikely that 0 of the 100 people are likely to have it. 

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