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Does Drinking Cause High Blood Pressure?

Person with hands on head, thinking, "Does drinking cause high blood pressure?"

High blood pressure is one of America’s most common chronic health conditions. Over time, its effects can lead to highly damaging changes in your heart and blood vessel function. If you drink excessively, you not only increase your chances of needing alcohol addiction treatment. You also boost your chances of developing dangerous blood pressure increases. Heavy drinking is a known potential contributor to this serious health issue. Contact BRC Healthcare today at 888.559.2036 to learn more about alcohol and high blood pressure.

The Basics of High Blood Pressure

Your blood pressure is the amount of force blood creates when it passes through your arteries. It has two forms:

  • Systolic pressure, which occurs when your heart actively beats
  • Diastolic pressure, which occurs when your heart halts temporarily between beats

Your systolic and diastolic levels must fall in a particular range to support good health. You can develop hypotension or low blood pressure if they drop too low. You can develop hypertension or high blood pressure if they rise too high. High blood pressure, in particular, is associated with many significant problems. The most well-known examples of these problems include heart attack, heart failure, and stroke.

Does Drinking Cause High Blood Pressure?

Depending on your level of alcohol use, the answer to this question can be yes or no. Limited amounts of drinking can lower your blood pressure. This fact helps explain the health-supporting reputation of low and moderate alcohol use. However, it would be best if you never started drinking or increased your alcohol intake to improve your blood pressure. Public health specialists agree that drinking has too many downsides to make this a good idea.

In what situations can drinking increase your blood pressure? As a rule, this occurs when you drink alcohol in large amounts. That can happen even in isolated incidents of heavy alcohol use.

If you have a pattern of heavy drinking, high blood pressure may become a chronic health condition. In other words, it can continue to affect your well-being over time. Typically, high blood pressure produces no direct symptoms. You may not know you’re affected unless you or your doctor check your pressure levels.

The Connection Between Alcohol and High Blood Pressure

A variety of things can alter your blood pressure throughout any given day. In most cases, the pressure level changes are brief and minor. However, certain factors can lead to a consistent increase in your pressure levels and a high blood pressure diagnosis.

How does heavy drinking contribute to the onset of high blood pressure? Consumption of large amounts of alcohol increases the activity of chemicals in your body that narrow your arteries. In turn, narrowing your arteries increases the pressure produced by the blood passing through them. Whether or not you drink, other factors that can boost your pressure levels include:

  • A lack of adequate exercise
  • Poor dietary choices
  • High body fat levels, i.e., obesity

The effects of diabetes can also help trigger high blood pressure.

Turn to BRC Healthcare for More About the Risks of Alcohol Use and High Blood Pressure

The potential link between alcohol and high blood pressure is well-established. Even if you aren’t affected by addiction, drinking may put you at significant risk for this health problem. To find out more, talk to our team of experienced and knowledgeable professionals at BRC Healthcare.

You can also turn to BRC Healthcare for state-of-the-art care for alcohol abuse and addiction. We’re committed to bringing real change as you work to create a lasting pattern of abstinence. To get started, contact us today at 888.559.2036 or reach out to us online.