High Blood Pressure Medications, Everything You Want to Know
There are dozens of anti-hypertensives on the market. They have a variety of levels of efficacy and side-effects. Often you’ll be prescribed more than one to treat your high blood pressure. This guide will walk you through all the blood pressure medications.
Before getting on any hypertension medicines, it is always advised to see if you can make some simple lifestyle adjustments to get your numbers down. Fortunately there is a lot that you can do, and most of them are just reforming habits associated with food and exercise. Lifestyle changes improve a lot more than just your blood pressure numbers, they’ll improve you’re overall well being.
If you’ve made the adjustments and your blood pressure is being stubborn, then you should definitely consult your doctor. You might have an underlying condition like kidney disease that is causing your high blood pressure. If your doctor has ruled out underlying conditions and you’ve made the appropriate lifestyle adjustments, then it’s time to look at taking some medications that will help. These days, doctors are equipped with a large arsenal of drugs that are very effective.
Blood Pressure Medicine Classes
These are usually a first defense at combating hypertension medicinally. Basically they remove excess water and sodium from your body. Which effectively decreases the amount of fluid in your blood vessels, reducing pressure on your vessel walls. Some of these will also reduce your potassium levels (except potassium-sparing ones), so you need to be sure you get enough potassium. Eat avocados (you should already be doing this), and try using Nu-Salt, Lo-Salt or Lite-Salt in your cooking for supplementing potassium. If diuretics aren’t enough to lower your blood pressure, your doctor might recommend adding other blood pressure medications to your treatment.
- Beta-blockers (beta-adrenergic blocking agents)
These work by mitigating the effects adrenaline (the hormone epinephrine). Essentially they cause your heart to beat slower and with less force, which reduces pressure one the vessel walls.
- ACE inhibitors (Angiotensin-converting enzyme)
These work by inhibiting production of the hormone angiotensin. This hormone is responsible for making blood vessels more narrow.
- Angiotensin II receptor blockers (ARB’s)
These are similar to ACE inhibitors, but instead of inhibiting the production of Angiotensin, they simply prevent it from working.
- Calcium channel blockers
These are effective in disabling heart and blood vessel muscle cells from absorbing calcium. The effect of this is that the muscle tissue needs calcium to constrict, allowing the blood vessels to stay relaxed and widening vessels walls.
- Alpha blockers
These effectively prevent the hormone norepinephrine from contracting the blood vessel walls of arteries and veins. Another way to try and keep blood vessels as wide as possible.
- Combined alpha and beta-blockers
Alpha-beta blockers are quite similarly to beta blockers. Typically they are prescribed for people with high blood pressure who are at a high risk for having heart failure.
- Central agonists
These affect your nervous system by preventing neurological signals that speed your heart and narrow your blood vessels. This keeps your heart from pumping too hard and allow the blood to flow more fluidly through your circulatory system.
- Peripheral adrenergic inhibitors
Similar to Alpha blockers, they block noradrenaline from constricting the muscles with the vessel walls.
- Blood vessel dilators (vasodilators)
These directly affect blood vessel muscles by preventing them constricting. This keeps blood vessels relaxed and blood flowing smoothly and lowers pressure.
- Renin inhibitors.
This enzype is created in the kidneys and starts a chemical chain reaction that increases pressure within the blood vessels. These simply inhibit the enzymes production, which prevents the chemical reaction from taking place.
Quad Dosing Treatment for Blood Pressure
An Australian study released recently, confirmed the efficacy of a blood pressure medicine composed of small amounts of 4 different classes of current blood pressure medications. The initial results are impressive, as typical side effects were not witnessed due to the low quantities of each substance, yet the results showed 100% of participants had significant reduction in blood pressure.
Fish Oil for Hypertension
Fish oil has been used for decades as a supplement to high blood pressure medicine. There is plenty of scientific evidence to support supplementing with fish oil to help reduce systolic blood pressure in adults. If you’re looking for a quality supplement, LabDoor does very thorough independent testing of many varieties of supplements including fish oil.
If you already have a good doctor you trust, then seek his advice. If going to a new doctor, make sure they take some time to discuss with you what your options are (because there are many options and treatments) and together find the one that will work best with you.
Once you get on a treatment regimen, it’s imperative that you continually monitor your blood pressure. You want to be sure that what you are doing is effective and it also helps you to find out what isn’t working. The easiest way to monitor your blood pressure with regularity is to to invest in a home blood pressure monitor, they’re cheap and extremely convenient. The added bonus of having a meter at home is you can share with everyone your household as well.