Treatments for High BP
If you are at risk, or even diagnosed with high BP, the first line of treatment for hypertension that helps lower blood pressure, and one that doctors recommend, is an altered healthier lifestyle which includes:
- A low sodium, high fibre diet
- Maintaining proper weight in relation to BMI
- Regular exercise (at least 30 minutes of physical activity daily)
- No smoking & low alcohol consumption
- Stress management
If lifestyle changes does not help lower blood pressure then the doctor, in addition to the healthier daily routine, will prescribe high blood pressure medication such as:
- Diuretics – Doctors generally prescribe diuretics as a first treatment option for high BP. Diuretics or water pills remove excess water and sodium from the body, thus lessening the fluids flowing in the blood vessels, helping reduce the pressure on vessel walls.
- Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme (ACE) Inhibitors – The ACE inhibitors relax blood vessels by preventing the formation of a hormone called angiotensin. This angiotensin is a substance in the body that narrows blood vessels.
- Angiotensin II Receptor Blockers (ARBs) – The ARBs help relax the blood vessels by blocking the action of angiotensin (which are responsible for narrowing the blood vessels).
- Calcium Channel Blockers – Calcium channel blockers, as the name suggests, prevent calcium from entering the heart and blood vessel muscle cells which helps the cells to relax.
- Beta Blockers – Beta-blockers are also called as beta-adrenergic blocking agents. These beta-blockers check the effect of the hormone adrenaline and help the heart to beat slower and with lesser force.
- Renin Inhibitors – The kidneys produce an enzyme called as renin that increases blood pressure. Renin inhibitors slow down the production of renin thus reducing their ability to increase blood pressure.
- Alpha Blockers – Alpha blockers prevent the hormone norepinephrine (noradrenaline) from narrowing the muscles in the arteries and veins and helps the vessels to remain open and relaxed.
- Alpha-Beta Blockers – Alpha-beta blockers function in a similar manner as the beta blockers and are generally prescribed to patients with high blood pressure with a risk of heart failure.
- Central-Acting Agents – Central-acting agents block the signals from the brain to the nervous system for speeding up the heart rate and narrowing the blood vessels. This helps the heart pump less fast and also helps blood flow easily through the blood vessels.
- Vasodilators – Vasodilators help widen (dilate) blood vessels and prevent their walls from narrowing which facilitates easier blood flow through the blood vessels and also helps slow the pumping of the heart.
- Aldosterone Antagonists – Aldosterone antagonists are generally prescribed to patients (along with another drug, mostly a diuretic) whose hypertension or high BP is difficult to treat such as elderly people, diabetics, heart patients, etc.
Hypertension is essentially what we call a lifestyle disease. With the right modifications in your ways and the right medications, you can definitely counter its effects to lead a hypertension-free life every day.
Hypertension is essentially what we call as a lifestyle disease. With the right modifications in your ways and medications, you can definitely counter its effects to lead a stress-free life every day.
Note of caution: This article is for information purpose only. Always consult your doctor before altering any diet plans, medications or in case of any other blood pressure-related troubles.