Sunday 25th June 2017

Lowering Blood Pressure Now

Lowering Blood Pressure Now – What this web site is about

Loweringbloodpressurenow

Welcome! – this website is all about lowering blood pressure now! Obviously ‘Now’ implies lowering blood pressure quickly and generally if your doctor is interested in lowering your blood pressure quickly that would usually mean medicinal intervention. This is because prescription drugs are usually the quickest way to lower blood pressure.

Also medicines can be prescribed for lowering blood pressure depending on a number of other factors such as age, ability to exercise, ability or willingness to radically change lifestyle, including diet, drinking and smoking habits etc.

There are methods of lowering blood pressure other than prescription drugs and the use of prescription drugs does have its draw backs. However, if speed is required it would ordinarily be because there would be serious implications to your health in not lowering blood pressure quickly and so it is a case of opting for the ‘Lesser of two evils’

We will give an overview of other methods of lowering blood pressure but primarily the overarching intention of this website is to give you information. Hopefully, exactly the information you need, quickly and easily.

What is high blood pressure?

Blood pressure measures the force on the wall of the blood vessels caused by the pressure of the blood. A blood pressure test will result in two numbers which are usually provided in the following format with one number written over the top of the other as follows:

120      (Systolic)


80       (Diastolic)

The top number is your systolic reading and is a measure of the pressure of blood pumping from the heart as it pushes the blood round the body.

The bottom number is your diastolic reading and is a measure of the pressure in the arteries when the heart rests between beats.

Ideal blood pressure is generally considered as Systolic around 120 and diastolic around 80

High blood pressure is referred to as Hypertension and low blood pressure is called Hypotension and the following table suggests how your numbers from a blood pressure test may be interpreted:

Interpretation of blood pressure test numbers:

Interpretation

Systolic BP (mmHg)

Diastolic BP (mmHg)

A sensible response if you consistently get these results
Hypotension

Less than 90

Less than 60

A healthy life style including diet and exercise. See your doctor if Low BP symptoms occur such as fainting
Ideal

Less than 120

Less than 80

Maintain a healthy lifestyle
Normal

120 – 129

80 – 84

Maintain a healthy lifestyle
High Normal

130 – 139

85 – 89

Maintain a healthy lifestyle
Hypertension (mild)

140 – 159

90 – 99

If you consistently get these readings ie two or three readings taken on separate occasions – see your doctor
Hypertension (moderate)

160 – 179

100 – 109

If you consistently get these readings ie two or three readings taken on separate occasions – see your doctor
Hypertension (severe)

180 – 219

110 – 119

If you consistently get these readings ie two readings taken on separate occasions – see your doctor
Hypertension (very severe)

220 or higher

120 or higher

See your doctor quickly

Many things elevate blood pressure such as coffee, alcohol and exercise. Also blood pressure varies at different times of the day.

Some ‘Over-the-counter’ medicines can also increase blood pressure while you take them, for example, decongestants such as Sudafed.

One high reading (unless it is very high) should not give cause for alarm. Blood pressure should be checked on a number of occasions over a number of weeks, preferably at the same time of the day – such as in the morning when you wake up.  This will give you the most accurate picture of where your blood pressure is really at.

What are the health implications of having high blood pressure?

One of the most concerning problems of high blood pressure is that it usually has no symptoms. However, if your blood pressure is too high it can put a strain on your heart or your arteries and it can affect your body in the followings ways:

  • The strain put on your heart can be too much even to the extent of causing heart attack or heart failure
  • It can have an impact on your brain and is thought to be the cause of strokes, dementia and even aneurysms
  • It can affect your kidneys leading to kidney disease
  • It is thought to cause peripheral arterial disease in your limbs, particularly in your legs
  • If you have high cholesterol or diabetes the negative impact on your health through high blood pressure can be increased

Why you may need to lower your blood pressure quickly.

Your doctor may want to lower your blood pressure quickly if you are having other health complications which may have resulted from high blood pressure such as heart problems.

High blood pressure can remain undiscovered for years as there are often no obvious symptoms.

The decision to use prescription drug to reduce your blood pressure will also be influenced by your ability to reduce your blood pressure by other means and there are external factors which can influence this decision such as your age, whether you are able or willing to change your life style, whether you are able to take regular exercise etc.

Many health practitioners’ will seek ways to lower your blood pressure other than medication because once you begin taking prescription drugs to reduce your blood pressure then you are likely to continue having to take them.

However, there are not always other choices available and it is better in the long term to take prescription drugs to lower your blood pressure than to leave it to increase unchecked.

Other methods of blood pressure reduction

There are other ways to reduce your blood pressure and prescription drugs should only be used if other factors mean the alternatives are not an option.

Among the other alternatives are diet, exercise, stress reduction and overall life style changes. This will often mean reducing or giving up smoking, alcohol and high fat, high cholesterol foods together with taking regular exercise. These need to be permanent changes and your blood pressure checks need to be regular to ensure that these changes are working.

High blood pressure can be hereditary and all of the other causes and reasons for it are not known. You can and you should attempt to reduce your blood pressure by means other than prescription drugs but sometimes the alternatives will not work and prescription drugs are the only alternative.

What are the broad categories of prescription drugs and how do they work to lower blood pressure?

Sometimes a number of drugs are used in combination to control blood pressure. The broad categories of prescription drugs are as follows:

ACE Inhibitors (Angiotensin Converting Inhibitors)

These are prescription drugs which help to control the production of an enzyme called Angiotensin produced by the body which narrows the arteries particularly in the kidneys but elsewhere too. ACE inhibitors reduce the bodies’ production of this enzyme which helps the blood vessels to relax and open which reduces blood pressure.

Most of these drugs have brand names which end in ‘Pril’

ARB’s (Angiotensin receptor blockers)

These are drugs that control the impact of the bodies release of the angiotensin enzyme by blocking the enzymes combination with chemical receptors and thereby reducing its effect of narrowing arteries.

Most of these drugs have brand names which end in ‘Artan’

Calcium Channel Blockers

When Calcium enters the cells of the heart muscle and arteries it causes a stronger contraction. The way these drugs work is by preventing the entry of calcium to the heart muscle and artery cells which means that the contraction is less forceful which allows the artery walls be more relaxed so that the arteries expand more easily which reduces blood pressure.

Many of these drugs have brand names which end in ‘Pine’

Thiazide Diuretics

These drugs work by helping the body expel fluid out through urine which in turn helps to lower blood pressure.

Many of these drugs have brand names which end in ‘Ide’

Beta Blockers

These medicines help to reduce heart rate and the load on the heart and arteries thereby lowering blood pressure

 Alpha Blockers

These prescription drugs work by decreasing the resistance of the arteries and relaxing the  vascular walls