When a person decides to take blood pressure medication, they will be prescribed a dose over the counter. For the medication to work, the person taking it will need to take it at the same time every day.
Some people take their blood pressure medication daily, while others take it every other day. Some people only take their medication when they feel symptoms of high blood pressure, such as headaches.
The length of time it takes for blood pressure medication to work depends on the type of medication, the dose and the individual.
What are the side effects of blood pressure medication?
All medications have some side effects. The side effects of blood pressure medication depend on the person taking it and the dose.
Some of the most common side effects associated with blood pressure medication include:
- Dry mouth
- Blurred vision
- Chest pain
It is important that a person takes their medication as directed. A person should not change the dose to try and reduce side effects. If a person stops taking medication and experiences side effects, they should contact their doctor.
People may also experience other side effects, such as skin rashes or swelling. It is important to check with a doctor before taking blood pressure medication if a person has experienced any other side effects.
The side effects of blood pressure medication may be worsened if an individual:
- Is taking the drug for a long period of time (e.g., more than 2 weeks)
- Has other health conditions (e.g., heart disease, kidney disease, liver disease, thyroid disease, diabetes, or hyperthyroidism)
- Has been diagnosed with depression, anxiety or stress
- Has had an allergy to the medication
Anyone experiencing side effects from their blood pressure medication should contact their doctor.
When a person stops taking medication, there is a chance that blood pressure may temporarily increase. However, if a person can reduce the dose while taking their medication, it is more likely that a blood pressure reading will return to normal.
How can blood pressure medication help manage high blood pressure?
High blood pressure is a condition that affects a person’s body’s ability to remove and transport blood efficiently.
It is a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease, which is the number one cause of death in the UK. It is estimated that high blood pressure causes around 7.1 million deaths worldwide each year.
Blood pressure medication is an important tool that a person can use to manage their blood pressure. It helps to prevent the symptoms of high blood pressure from becoming worse, and it provides a person with a way to lower their blood pressure.
Blood pressure medication may help a person to:
- Reduce the number of symptoms of high blood pressure
- Maintain a healthy blood pressure reading
- Improve the treatment of high blood pressure
- Reduce the risk of a heart attack
- Improve a person’s overall health
A doctor may prescribe a person blood pressure medication to help manage their high blood pressure.
Blood pressure medication is not a cure for high blood pressure. It is a tool that a person can use to help manage their blood pressure.
A person can also help manage their blood pressure through lifestyle changes. These include:
- Making sure that they get enough exercise. This can help to improve the health of the heart and blood vessels.
- Eating a healthy diet. This can help a person to manage their weight and manage their blood pressure.
- Limiting alcohol intake.
- Avoiding smoking.
- Managing stress.
It is important to consult a doctor if a person is unsure about their blood pressure. They can help to determine if a person should take blood pressure medication.
What are the different types of blood pressure medication?
There are two main types of blood pressure medication:
- Beta blockers
- Calcium channel blockers
Beta blockers are used to treat high blood pressure. They work by blocking the effects of certain hormones on the heart and blood vessels.
These hormones include adrenaline, which is released during a person’s fight-or-flight response. Beta blockers also reduce the effects of angiotensin, which is released when a person consumes a high amount of salt.
Beta blockers are commonly prescribed to treat high blood pressure in people who smoke.
Calcium channel blockers
Calcium channel blockers are used to treat high blood pressure in people who are at a higher risk of heart disease. The effects of these medications include preventing the arteries from constricting too much.
These medications are most commonly prescribed to people who have a history of heart attack, stroke or angina. They are also prescribed to prevent a heart attack in people who have already had a heart attack.
Calcium channel blockers are usually preferred over beta blockers because they have fewer side effects.
Blood pressure medication should not be taken by pregnant or breastfeeding women.
Blood pressure medication side effects and precautions
Some people may experience a range of side effects from blood pressure medication.
It is important to talk to a doctor before taking medication if a person experiences any of the following:
- Severe headache
- Vision problems
- Sore throat
- Stomach pain or cramps
- Abdominal pain
- Feeling faint or light-headed
- Feeling anxious or nervous
- Loss of appetite
- Feeling anxious
- Changes in vision
- Changes in hearing
It is important to check with a doctor before taking blood pressure medications if a person has had:
- Any allergic reaction
- An irregular heartbeat
- Liver disease
- Kidney disease
- Thyroid disease
People should contact their doctor if they experience any of the following:
- A high level of potassium in the blood
Blood pressure medications are a main tool that a doctor has to treat high blood pressure. They help a person to lower their blood pressure, and they do not cure the condition.
There are two main types of blood pressure medications: beta blockers and calcium channel blockers.
Beta blockers are commonly prescribed to treat high blood pressure in people who smoke. Calcium channel blockers are more common in people who are at a higher risk of heart disease.
Some people may experience side effects from blood pressure medications, such as:
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