Can An Ear Infection Cause High Blood Pressure?

The American Heart Association found a clear correlation between sudden changes in hearing and blood pressure. Ear infections can cause high blood pressure.1

Therefore, it potentially is a possibility that ear infections can cause high blood pressure. Stay tuned to find out more!!!

What is blood pressure?

Blood pressure is the amount of pressure that your heart utilises to pump the blood around your body. 2 The arteries are the main way that the blood is transported from your heart to other parts of your body. It is also normal for your blood pressure to fluctuate during the day.

How is blood pressure measured?

Blood pressure is measured using two values:

Systolic blood pressure- this is the pressure caused by heart beats, this occurs when the heart contracts allowing the pumping of oxygen-rich blood.

Diastolic blood pressure-this is the pressure in the blood vessels when the heart muscles relax. The diastolic pressure is always lower in comparison to systolic pressure.3

Blood pressure is measured in units of millimetres of mercury (mmHg). When your blood pressure reading is presented, the upper value is always the systolic value. This is followed by the lower diastolic value.4  A common method observed by healthcare professionals is to measure blood pressure through wrapping an inflatable cuff around your arm. This instrument is called a sphygmomanometer.

You can also measure your blood pressure at home using a self-measured blood pressure motoring (SMBP). These devices are useful for regularly checking your personal blood pressure and are safe to use.

How high is “high” blood pressure?

Blood pressure is divided into 4 general categories:

Normal- Systolic mmHg reading less than 120 and Diastolic mmHg reading at less than 80

Elevated- Systolic mmHg reading 120-129 and Diastolic mmHg reading at less than 80

High blood pressure (Hypertension Stage 1)- Systolic mmHg reading 130-139 and Diastolic mmHg reading between 80-89

High blood pressure (Hypertension Stage 2)- Systolic mmHg reading 140 or higher and Diastolic mmHg reading between 90 or higher

Hypertensive crisis- Systolic mmHg reading higher that’s 180 and Diastolic mmHg reading higher than 120.5

Blood pressure is usually measured over days when you are resting. If several of these measures are indicated to be high they are considered to have high blood pressure. You are considered to have high blood pressure even if only one of the two readings are high (systolic or diastolic).4

It is vital to measure your blood pressure more than once, as your blood pressure is known to fluctuate throughout the day. Your blood pressure can also be affected by various things such as stress, pain, physical exertion or extreme heat/cold.4

Additionally, being in certain places that make your nervous can also affect your readings for example being present in the doctor’s office when having your reading taken.

What causes hypertension?  

High blood pressure is a common condition which affects the body’s arteries. It’s also known as hypertension. The causes of this hypertension could be due to two things: the quantity of blood the heart pumps, and the ease at which the blood travels through the artery. When the heart pumps a lot of blood, and the arteries are narrower, the higher the blood pressure is.

There are two main types of high blood pressure;

  1. Primary/Essential Hypertension- in which there is an identified cause of the high blood pressure. This tends to develop eventually over the year. When plaque builds up in the arteries, it causes atherosclerosis which causes a higher risk of high blood pressure
  2. Secondary Hypertension- the high blood pressure in this case is caused due to an underlying condition, this tends to appear suddenly. Conditions that may cause secondary hypertension are as follows: adrenal gland tumours, congenital heart defects, cough and cold medicines, some pain relievers, birth control pills, and other prescription drugs, illicit drugs cocaine and amphetamines, kidney disease, obstructive sleep apnea and thyroid problems6

Are ringing ears a sign of high blood pressure?

Tinnitus is a term used when you experience ringing or noises in both ears. Tinnitus is caused by an internal sound and is a common problem. Statistically speaking, tinnitus only affects 15% to 20% of people and older adults are more prone to this.7 

One cause of tinnitus could be due to blood vessel disorders, for example, atherosclerosis, high blood pressure or deformed blood vessels. These disorders can cause the blood to travel more forcefully through the blood vessel in turn leading to high blood pressure. This change in blood flow makes the tinnitus more obvious.7

Why does high blood pressure cause tinnitus?

Your ears are a delicate system. They rely on a network of blood vessels and delicate hairs to help you hear. When one element of this system is damaged, it can affect your ability to hear. When you have high blood pressure, it can also affect your ears; research has a direct association to hearing loss and individuals with hypertension. This was especially noticeable between the ages of 45 and 64 years.8

Other signs and symptoms of high blood pressure

High blood pressure is difficult to detect. However, this can be identified as the symptoms of high blood pressure:9

  • Blurred vision
  • Nosebleeds
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest pain
  • Dizziness
  • Headaches

Risk factors for high blood pressure

Your lifestyle choices may impact and increase the risk of high blood pressure. The factors that might affect your blood pressure consist of:

  1. Unhealthy Diet: Having too high a diet in sodium can risk increasing blood pressure. Lack of potassium in your diet may also lead to an increased risk in high blood pressure. Potassium can be food in foods such as bananas, beans and yoghurt
  2. Physical inactivity: regular exercise helps the heart and blood vessels to stay strong and healthy. This can maintain a healthy weight and lower blood pressure
  3. Alcohol consumption can also cause an increase in blood pressure
  4. Smoking can damage the heart and the blood vessels, preventing enough oxygen from being transported around the body

Other Factors: that can affect high blood pressure can be genetics, age, sex and race.10

Treatment, management and prevention of high blood pressure

You can prevent and manage high blood pressure by maintaining a healthy diet, limiting your alcohol intake, losing weight appropriately, staying active, cutting down caffeine and by stopping smoking.

The treatment of high blood pressure depends on your readings, and the risk of developing heart attacks or strokes. Most of the time lifestyle changes can help prevent high blood pressure but if the condition worsens you may be prescribed medication to help with the high blood pressure.11

When to seek medical attention?

If your high blood pressure is detected to be frequent, it is good to seek medical advice. If any of the signs are noticed, it is best to notify your GP. 


In summary, high blood pressure can be caused mainly due to your lifestyle and is mostly preventable by making changes to your lifestyle. High Blood pressure can cause ringing in the ears and can be an indication to seek further advice. High blood pressure can be treated by lifestyle changes and through medication. 


  1. What Older Age Does to Your Feet [Internet]. WebMD. [cited 2022 Oct 7]. Available from:
  2. “What Is Blood Pressure?” Nhs.Uk, 26 June 2018,
  3. What Is Blood Pressure and How Is It Measured? Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWiG), 2019.,
  4. What Is Blood Pressure and How Is It Measured? Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWiG), 2019.,
  5. “Understanding Blood Pressure Readings.” Www.Heart.Org, Accessed 27 Oct. 2022.
  6. High blood pressure (Hypertension) - Symptoms and causes [Internet]. Mayo Clinic. [cited 2022 Oct 27]. Available from:
  7. Tinnitus - Symptoms and causes [Internet]. Mayo Clinic. [cited 2022 Oct 27]. Available from:
  8. Are ringing ears a sign of high blood pressure? [Internet]. Anderson Audiology. 2021 [cited 2022 Oct 27]. Available from:
  9. High blood pressure - symptoms and treatment [Internet]. [cited 2022 Oct 27]. Available from:
  10. CDC. Know your risk for high blood pressure | cdc. Gov [Internet]. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 2020 [cited 2022 Oct 27]. Available from:
  11. High blood pressure (Hypertension) - Treatment [Internet]. 2017 [cited 2022 Oct 27]. Available from:
This content is purely informational and isn’t medical guidance. It shouldn’t replace professional medical counsel. Always consult your physician regarding treatment risks and benefits. See our editorial standards for more details.

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Jolanda Roberts

Masters of Science- MSc Psychological Therapies in Mental Health, Queen Mary University of London
Bachelor of Science- BSc Psychology with Neuroscience

Jolanda is currently an Assistant Psychologist within the Berkshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust. She has built a plethora of skills within research, hospitals and community settings. She is dedicated to spreading Mental Health Awareness among people from all backgrounds and is knowledgeable in applying theoretical concepts to real-life scenarios. In the future, Jolanda aspires to qualify as a Clinical Psychologist and provide the best holistic care to meet individual needs in a compassion-driven way. presents all health information in line with our terms and conditions. It is essential to understand that the medical information available on our platform is not intended to substitute the relationship between a patient and their physician or doctor, as well as any medical guidance they offer. Always consult with a healthcare professional before making any decisions based on the information found on our website.
Klarity is a citizen-centric health data management platform that enables citizens to securely access, control and share their own health data. Klarity Health Library aims to provide clear and evidence-based health and wellness related informative articles. 
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