After you’re diagnosed with high blood pressure, your physician will provide treatment for it. Later on, your BP will be retested to see if the treatment is effective in controlling your HBP.
Treatment will still go on even if your BP is well-managed. Your physician will perform routine BP tests and determine the frequency of these tests to help stabilize your BP in the long-term. Early treatment is the best way to control your HBP as it helps prevent you from experiencing complications like kidney failure, stroke or heart attack.
A change in lifestyle and medications are the typical approaches to treat HBP. HBP maintenance will last a lifetime and faithfully following your treatment plan will help your prevent complications enabling you to live normally and healthily longer.
Aims of your Treatment Plan
For adults, the objective of their HBP treatment is to keep their BP from going beyond 140/90 mmHg. A BP under 130/80 mmHg is required for adults who have chronic kidney disease or diabetes.
The following lifestyle modifications are required to help keep your BP under control:
- Controlling your stress and knowing how to cope with it
- Stop smoking
- Staying at a weight range considered normal for your height
- Leading an active life
- Eating a healthy diet
- Stop drinking alcohol
Medications for HBP are often taken orally and tend to have side effects that are mild. If you experience any side effects from these drugs, you need to consult your doctor who may adjust your doses or may replace your medications with another.
- Diuretics – These are often referred to as water pills and their function is to assist your kidneys in taking out excess salt and water from the body helping you in the process of reducing your BP. Diuretics are usually taken along with other HBP meds.
- Beta Blockers – These types of drugs allow your heart to slow down and less blood then is pumped into the vessels causing your BP to decrease in the process.
- ACE Inhibitors – These drugs hinder your body from producing a hormone named angiotensin II. This is the hormone that causes your blood vessels to constrict. Without this hormone, your blood vessels tend to relax preventing the need for the heart to pump blood vigorously into the blood vessels. This helps your blood pressure to decrease.
- Angiotensin II Receptor Blockers – These meds act in the same way as ACE inhibitors which are to prevent the production of the angiotensin II hormone.
- Calcium Channel Blockers – These are medications the keep calcium from entering into the muscle cells of your blood vessels and heart enabling your blood vessels and heart to stay flexible.
- Alpha Blockers – These are drugs that prevent nerve impulses from tightening up the blood vessels enabling the blood to flow unrestricted and making your BP go down.
- Alpha-Beta Blockers – These drugs function the same way as alpha blockers and also reduce heartbeat like beta blockers. Both these functions make the BP go down.
- Nervous System Inhibitors – The function of these medications is to help nerve impulses from the brain to relax and prevent vessel constriction. As a result the BP goes down.
- Vasodilators – These medicines relax the blood vessels making your BP go down.
Alternative Treatments for High Blood Pressure
- Acupuncture – Numerous studies have verified the efficacy of acupuncture for normalizing blood pressure. During treatment, the acupuncturist will insert acupuncture needles, into meridians or energy channels in the body that are responsible for high blood pressure. One treatment session can last for at least several minutes to about 30 minutes. For HBP, you may need to undergo a session or two for and the duration of your entire treatment plan will depend on how well you respond to the treatment.
- Herbal Therapies – Specific herbs like hawthorn, ginseng, tetrandine and snakeroots have been reported by a lot of HBP sufferers as effective in lowering their BP.
- Supplements – Some the following supplements have been reported to help lower blood pressure in a lot of HBP patients.
- Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) – One other benefit of taking this supplement besides lowering blood pressure especially in individuals suffering from not-so-severe HBP is that this supplement does not have any side effects to the user. CoQ10 works to lower BP in a way totally different than how antihypertensive drugs work.
- Omega-3 fatty acids – People taking these supplements have experienced lowering of their HBP especially in people with mild HBP. Studies have consistently shown that taking regular but high doses of Omega-3 will result in satisfactory lowering of their blood pressure.
- Amino acids – One particular amino acid called L-arginine has indeed proven effective in lowering BP but in terms of duration may vary from person to person. Another amino acid supplement called L-taurine has been also reported to contain BP lowering capabilities.