From an interview with
Dr. John Patton
McLeod Cardiology Associates – Florence
Many people need to take medicine in addition to making lifestyle changes to help keep their blood pressure at healthy levels. But what does this medication do? How does it work?
According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), medication performs several important functions for patients with high blood pressure. It can keep blood pressure at a healthy level by causing your body to get rid of water, which decreases the amount of water and salt in your body to a healthy level. Medication also relaxes your blood vessels and helps your heart to beat with less force. Finally, blood pressure medication blocks nerve activity that can restrict your blood vessels.
Consistency is Key With Medication
“Missing a single dose of blood pressure medication is usually not cause for alarm. Just take it as soon as you remember,” says McLeod Cardiologist Dr. John Patton. “However, failing to take blood pressure medication as prescribed for an extended period of time could raise your chance of a heart attack or stroke.
If unpleasant side effects from the medications are making you reluctant to continue, talk to your primary care provider. Never stop taking blood pressure medications on your own. Any medications can cause side effects, and blood pressure medications are no exception.
If side effects are difficult to manage, explore other medication possibilities. There are many options available. Work with your primary care provider to find the right one for you.”
In addition to taking medicine to control your blood pressure, you can take other steps to help keep your blood pressure levels healthy.
To learn more, talk with a cardiologist near you.