What Medications Are Used To Treat High Blood Pressure
Four classes of high blood pressure medications are considered first line when starting treatment. Sometimes other medications are coupled with these first-line drugs to better control your high blood pressure. First-line drug pressure lowering medications are:
- Angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors block the production the angiotensin II hormone, which the body naturally uses to control blood pressure. When angiotensin II is blocked, your blood vessels dont narrow. Examples: lisinopril , enalapril , captopril .
- Angiotensin II receptor blockers block this same hormone from binding with receptors in the blood vessels. ARBs work the same way as ACE inhibitors to keep blood vessels from narrowing. Examples: metoprolol , valsartan , losartan .
- Calcium channel blockers prevent calcium from entering the muscle cells of your heart and blood vessels, allowing these vessels to relax. Examples: amlodipine , nifedipine , diltiazem .
- Diuretics flush excess sodium from your body, reducing the amount of fluid in your blood. Diuretics are often used with other high blood pressure medicines, sometimes in one combined pill. Examples: indapamide, hydrochlorothiazide, chlorothiazide.
What Are The Symptoms Of Resistant Hypertension
You can have hypertension without having any symptoms. The best way to know if you have high blood pressure is to have your blood pressure checked by a health care provider.
However, symptoms may be felt when blood pressure first rises or during a hypertensive crisis, when levels are extremely high. These symptoms may include headaches, shortness of breath, chest pain and nosebleeds.
Dizziness is usually not a symptom of high blood pressure. In fact, dizziness can sometimes be a symptom of low blood pressure. Frequent or unexplained dizziness may be a warning sign of a serious condition and should be addressed by your physician.
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Ways To Reduce Stress And Keep Blood Pressure Down
When it comes to preventing and treating high blood pressure, one often-overlooked strategy is managing stress. If you often find yourself tense and on-edge, try these seven ways to reduce stress.
For more information on lifestyle changes to treat high blood pressure and how to choose the right medication if needed, read , a Special Health Report from Harvard Medical School.
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What Natural Remedies Therapies And Supplements Lower Blood Pressure
Alternative therapies may be helpful to people trying to control their blood pressure.
- Acupuncture and biofeedback are well-accepted alternative techniques that may help some people with high blood pressure.
- Techniques that induce relaxation and reduce stress are recommended. These include meditation, yoga, and relaxation training.
- These techniques alone may not control high blood pressure for many people. They should not be used as a substitute for medical therapy without first consulting with your health care practitioner.
Dietary supplements and alternative medications and therapies are sometimes recommended for high blood pressure.
- Examples include vitamins, garlic, fish oil, L-arginine, soy, coenzyme Q10, herbs, phytosterols, and chelation therapy.
- While these substances may be beneficial, the exact nature of their benefits is not known.
- Scientific studies have produced no evidence that these therapies lower blood pressure or prevent the complications of high blood pressure.
- Most of these substances are harmless if taken in moderate doses. Most people can take them without problems.
- Talk to your health care practitioner if you are considering any of these treatments. Substituting these therapies for medical therapies that have been shown to lower blood pressure and the risk of complications may have a harmful effect on your health.
Meditate And Practice Om Chanting
Meditation, deep breaths and yoga have more profound effects than you can imagine.
Consider it a personal experience, but deep breaths and chanting om is a solution. It is a way to control high BP immediately.
High blood pressure increases heart rate and causes erratic breathing.
At the time of panic, all you need to focus on is your breathing.
Many times, situations go out of hand due to less oxygen supply in the body.
So, focus more on internal strength even at those critical seconds. Try to listen to calm music.
You need to stay calm for those brief moments and not give up on yourself.
Don’t Rely On Supplements
While a diet rich in potassium and possibly calcium can help control blood pressure, it’s unclear if supplements have the same effect. And some recent research suggests that too much calcium from supplements might increase the risk of heart disease and other health problems.
As for potassium, the form in supplements might not have the same effect as the kind in foods. And too much of it, even from food, can cause problems for people with heart failure or kidney disease, and for those who take certain blood pressure drugs, including ACE inhibitors, angiotensin receptor blockers, and potassium-sparing diuretics such as spironolactone . So talk with a doctor before increasing your intake.
If you take diuretics, your doctor may prescribe a potassium supplement, because those medicines can lower potassium levels.
Dr Rupali Datta Clinical Dietitian At Fortis
1. Eat small portions frequently: Sneak healthy snacking sessions in-between the major meals of the day to avoid long gaps. Eating small portions several times of the day helps in preventing the sudden drop in blood pressure that one may experience after meals. So, if you are eating three full meals a day, it would be better to rather have them distributed in to five small meals a day. This one’s a great home remedy for also people who have diabetes.
Home remedies for low blood pressure: eat small portions frequently
2. Have adequate salt: Excess salt is bad, but on the other hand it is required by your body in moderate quantities. According to the World Health Organisation, your daily diet must contain at one teaspoon of added salt besides what you derive from natural from fruits and vegetables. In summers or if you exercise daily, keep some lime water with a pinch of salt handy. Salt works like an instant pick-me-up. Make sure you do not have too much salt too that may lead to problems like water retention along with high blood pressure.
Home remedies for low blood pressure: Excess salt is bad, but it is required by your body in moderate quantitiesHome remedies for low blood pressure: Drink at least 2 to 3 litres of water every dayHome remedies for low blood pressure: Caffeinated beverages like tea or coffee may help boost your blood pressureHome remedies for low blood pressure: Chew five to six tulsi leaves every morning
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When Treatment Is Recommended
Everyone with high blood pressure is advised to make healthy lifestyle changes.
Your doctor will carry out some blood and urine tests, and ask questions about your health to determine your risk of other problems:
- if your blood pressure is consistently above 140/90mmHg , but your risk of other problems is low you’ll be advised to make some changes to your lifestyle
- if your blood pressure is consistently above 140/90mmHg and your risk of other problems is high you’ll be offered medicine to lower your blood pressure, in addition to lifestyle changes
- if your blood pressure is consistently above 160/100mmHg you’ll be offered medicine to lower your blood pressure, in addition to lifestyle changes
Try Meditation Or Deep Breathing
While these two behaviors could also fall under stress reduction techniques, meditation and deep breathing deserve specific mention.
Both meditation and deep breathing may activate the parasympathetic nervous system. This system is engaged when the body relaxes, slowing the heart rate, and lowering blood pressure.
Theres quite a bit of research in this area, with studies showing that different styles of meditation appear to have benefits for lowering blood pressure .
Deep breathing techniques can also be quite effective.
In one study, participants were asked to either take six deep breaths over the course of 30 seconds or simply sit still for 30 seconds. Those who took breaths lowered their blood pressure more than those who just sat .
Try guided meditation or deep breathing. Heres a video to get you started.
Bottom line: Both meditation and deep breathing can activate the parasympathetic nervous system, which helps slow your heart rate and lower blood pressure.
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Drink Plenty Of Water
Dehydration can sometimes lead to low blood pressure. Some people may have hypotension even with mild dehydration.
You can also get dehydrated by losing water too quickly. This can happen through vomiting, severe diarrhea, fever, strenuous exercise, and excess sweating. Medications such as diuretics may also cause dehydration.
Is There A Cure For High Blood Pressure Can You Die
Lifelong control of hypertension will minimize the risk of developing heart attack, stroke, kidney failure, blindness, and a variety of other illnesses. Unlike other illnesses in which medications are taken for only a short period of time, high blood pressure medication is usually expected to be taken for the rest of the individual’s life. It is uncommon, but not rare, that significant lifestyle changes can lower blood pressure readings to normal.
Untreated or poorly controlled high blood pressure is a major risk factor for heart attack, stroke, and kidney failure. That is why high blood pressure is called “the silent killer.”
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Extra Virgin Olive Oil:
Another tip on how to treat high blood pressure naturally at home that I really want to show you and my other dear readers reading this article is to make use of extra virgin olive oil to deal with and eliminate the signs and symptoms causing by the high blood pressure issue.
Extra-virgin olive oil has antioxidants known as polyphenols, which can help to protect LDL cholesterol from oxidation and reduce high blood pressure. Moreover, olive oil has monounsaturated fatty acids that can aid in improving heart health.
According to a research published in the Archives of Internal Medicine in 2000, the use of extra-virgin olive oil can help in lowering the daily antihypertensive drug dosage demand.
Consume 2 3 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil on a daily basis to enjoy its wonderful effects. Use it in healthy dips or salad dressings. You can use it for baking or cooking as well.
How Does Blood Pressure Work
Blood pressure is the force against blood vessel walls as the heart pumps blood. When the heart squeezes and pushes blood into the vessels, blood pressure goes up. It comes down when the heart relaxes.
Blood pressure changes from minute to minute. It’s affected by activity and rest, body temperature, diet, emotions, posture, and medicines.
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What Tests Diagnose High Blood Pressure
Blood pressure is measured with a blood pressure cuff . This may be done using a stethoscope and a cuff and gauge or by an automatic machine. It is a routine part of the physical examination and one of the vital signs often recorded for a patient visit. Other vital signs include pulse rate, respiratory rate , temperature, and weight.
The American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology recommend specific steps to measure blood pressure in a medical setting.
- The patient should relax in a chair for at least five minutes, with the back supported and feet on the floor
- The patient should not have had caffeine, tobacco products or participated in any exercise for at least 30 minutes before the blood pressure check
- The patient should not talk for the five minute rest period
- The blood pressure cuff should not be placed over clothing instead it should be placed directly on the skin
- The arm being tested should be supported or be rested on a table or arm rest
- The cuff being used should be the appropriate size for the patient
- Blood pressure should be checked at least two times, separated by 1-2 minutes, and an average taken to estimate that personâs blood pressure
- For the first visit for a blood pressure check, the blood pressure reading should be measured in both arms and the higher of the two readings should be used to decide upon treatment
Other studies may be considered depending upon the individual patient’s needs
Get In A Quiet Room And Calm Yourself Down
If you are in a crowded place, shelter yourself in a quiet room immediately.
The undertone is to get away from the crowd. High BP triggers anxiety and breathlessness which needs isolation.
However, its advisable to keep a friend around just in case the situation goes out of hand.
But it is important to get away from the crowd and focus on yourself to get a hold of yourself.
Erratic heartbeat, ragged breathing, and flashes of warmth are signs of hypertension. Therefore, these are the signs you should look out for!
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What Do The Numbers Mean
Blood pressure is the force exerted by blood against the walls of your arteries as it flows through your body. It is measured as two numbers, one over the otherfor example, 120 over 80. The measurement is in millimeters of mercury, expressed as mmHg. The systolic number is the pressure in the arteries when the heart contracts. The diastolic number is the pressure when the heart rests between contractions. An elevation in either or both of those numbers signals high blood pressure. See chart below for more details.
Importantly, even if your blood pressure is not elevated enough to be considered high, the risk of a heart attack or stroke increases as pressure rises above normal.
|100 or above
|Your doctor will prescribe medication in addition to recommending lifestyle changes.
Source: Adapted from The 2014 Evidence-Based Guidelines for the Management of High Blood Pressure in Adults, a report from the panel members appointed to the eighth Joint National Committee Journal of the American Medical Association Feb. 5, 2014 Vol. 311: 507-520. Clinical Practice Guidelines for the Management of Hypertension in the Community, A Statement by the American Society of Hypertension and the International Society of Hypertension Journal of Clinical Hypertension Dec. 17, 2013.
Benefits Of Aerobic Exercise
One of the best types of exercise for your heart regardless of your sex, age, or weight is aerobic exercise. Aerobic activity affects your heart, lungs, and blood flow in the following ways:
- You breathe faster and more deeply, maximizing the amount of oxygen in your blood.
- Your heart beats faster, increasing blood flow to your muscles and back to your lungs.
- Your capillaries widen to deliver more oxygen to your muscles.
How does this help your heart? For one thing, it strengthens your heart and causes adaptations in your muscles. When your heart is stronger and your muscles are more fit, your heart doesnt need to beat as fast at rest. It also pumps blood more efficiently, improving blood flow throughout your entire body.
Aerobic exercise can also help you lose and maintain weight, as well as reduce your blood pressure. It can help keep your arteries clear by reducing levels of bad cholesterol , or low-density lipoprotein, in your blood. It also helps elevate levels of good cholesterol, or high-density lipoprotein. This can lead to less plaque buildup in your arteries.
In total, the effect of regular moderate exercise on your overall cardiovascular risk can be dramatic.
AHA encourages men to get at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic exercise per week. You can break this activity into five 30-minute sessions. Or you can exercise more frequently in shorter sessions of 10 to 15 minutes.
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How Is High Blood Pressure Diagnosed
High blood pressure usually has no symptoms. So the only way to find out if you have it is to get regular blood pressure checks from your health care provider. Your provider will use a gauge, a stethoscope or electronic sensor, and a blood pressure cuff. He or she will take two or more readings at separate appointments before making a diagnosis.
|Blood Pressure Category
|120 or higher
For children and teens, the health care provider compares the blood pressure reading to what is normal for other kids who are the same age, height, and gender.
Can High Blood Pressure Be Prevented Or Avoided
If your high blood pressure is caused by lifestyle factors, you can take steps to reduce your risk:
- Lose weight.
- Reduce your alcohol consumption.
- Learn relaxation methods.
If your high blood pressure is caused by disease or the medicine you take, talk to your doctor. He or she may be able to prescribe a different medicine. Additionally, treating any underlying disease can help reduce your high blood pressure.
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