High blood pressure is a common medical condition in the U.S. and other parts of the world. According to studies, nearly one in three Americans has this condition and only half of these individuals have it under control, while the rest is at risk for developing serious health problems such as stroke, heart attack, heart failure, kidney failure, or even death. In fact, heart failure is one of the major causes of death in the U.S. There are numerous medications available that provide control over this condition. And each has many pros and cons. Sometimes, you may also be advised to take more than one medication using free medication reminder app to treat your condition.
If you have high blood pressure, some lifestyle changes can help keep it under control. But you will need medications as well because changing lifestyle alone won’t completely cure your condition.
Having an effective medication routine, taking doses as prescribed, frequently monitoring your condition and making lifestyle changes are surefire ways to keep it under control.
How Does Changing Lifestyle Helps Your Condition?
Whether you’re at the risk of high blood pressure or already have it, changing your lifestyle can help you a lot with controlling this condition.
Here are some changes you should make to reduce or eliminate your need for blood pressure medications.
- Eat a healthy diet. Take fruits, vegetables and reduce salt in your diet.
- Don’t smoke.
- Join a gym and do exercise at least 3-4 days a week.
- Do not smoke and avoid excessive intake of alcohol. Healthy adults aged 65 or older – both men and women – should take only one drink a day. Those aged below 65 can take up to two drinks.
What Are Some Common Medications You Can Use to Control High Blood Pressure?
In addition to making lifestyle changes, you’ll likely receive one or more of the following medications.
Diuretics are water pills removes your body’s extra water and sodium. It also reduces the pressure on your vessel walls by reducing the amount of fluid flowing in your blood vessels.
Diuretics come in three types:
Most individuals prefer thiazide diuretics to treat high blood pressure and other related problems. If diuretics fails, you may get recommended the other two types.
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme (ACE) Inhibitors
ACE inhibitors prevent the formation of blood vessels narrowing enzyme called angiotensin in your body and helps relax your blood vessels. Some common examples of ACE inhibitors include Enalapril (Vasotec) and Lisinopril (Prinivil, Zestril).
Angiotensin II Receptor Blockers (ARBs)
ARBs block the action, not formation, of angiotensin enzyme to relax your blood vessels. Valsartan (Diovan) and losartan (Cozaar) are two of the common examples of ARBs.
Calcium Channel Blockers (CCBs)
These medications block calcium’s way to heart and blood vessels, thus causing the vessels to relax. The most common CCBs include amlodipine (Norvasc) and nifedipine (Adalat CC).
Beta-blockers diminish the effects of adrenaline, causing your heart to beat slower. Some common beta blockers include metoprolol (Lopressor, Toprol-XL) and atenolol (Tenormin).
These medications are for opening (dilate) blood vessels. They prevent muscles from tightening and keep vessels walls from narrowing. As a result, blood flows more easily through vessels without requiring your heart to pump harder.
All these medications can effectively lower blood pressure. However, different patients respond differently to certain drugs, which is often due to factors like age, sex, race, and other health conditions.
Also, using a two-drug combo instead of a single drug has proven to be more effective in controlling blood pressure. Sometimes you may even need to take more than two drugs using free pill reminder app to bring your blood pressure under control.
Which Medication You Should Not Take as A Blood Pressure Patient?
Some OTC medications can be problematic for those suffering from high blood pressure or carrying a heart disease as they can cause your heart to work harder. Such individuals should either avoid taking them or use them with caution.
Below are some drugs that blood pressure patients should never use without a doctor’s advice:
Medications like ibuprofen or naproxen are great for relieving pain, but they may also increase blood pressure and cause breathing problems. Acetaminophen is a safer alternative for such patients.
Cold medications that contain oxymetazoline, phenylephrine, or pseudoephedrine may also increase blood pressure. Therefore, it is important to speak with your pharmacist before taking these medications. You should also ask your doctor for other products that are safer for blood pressure and heart patients.
These creams may contain phenylephrine which could mix into the blood through your skin. Choose a product without phenylephrine to avoid a potential rise in blood pressure.
Vitamins, Herbs, And Dietary Supplements
These should be used with extreme caution. And if using them is necessary, do it only with your doctor’s advice. He is the only person who can monitor change in the effectiveness of your blood pressure medications or check for possible drug reactions.
It takes several medication combos and doses using medication app reminder before finding the most suitable one for your condition. A great way to determine whether your treatment is heading in the right direction is the frequent monitoring of your blood pressure at home using blood pressure apparatus. This tool is cheap and widely available. And the best thing about buying it is that you can buy it without prescription.
In most cases, using medication along with making some lifestyle changes can successfully improve your condition. Remember that finding the right solution for your condition may take time and effort, but it will give you a long and healthy life.