If you've been diagnosed with high blood pressure, it's likely that you and your doctor have discussed a plan to lower your blood pressure. For most people, medication is a major part of that plan. High blood pressure drugs are also called "anti-hypertensive" medicine.
Your doctor has many different high blood pressure drugs to choose from. These medications work in a variety of ways to lower blood pressure. Remember, though, that they do not cure high blood pressure. Rather, the goal of high blood pressure medicine is to control your blood pressure, bringing it back down to a normal level.
Cutting down on salt may help lower your blood pressure. And most Americans need to cut back, because they get more sodium than they should.
The American Heart Association recommends getting less than 2,500 milligrams (mg) of sodium each day, unless you have high blood pressure or if you are at risk (if you already have hypertension, have diabetes or kidney disease or are African American). That's less than a teaspoon from all your meals and snacks.
Start with these tips:
Break the habit of...
What are the different types of high blood pressure medicines? How do they control high blood pressure? Let's take a closer look at each group.
Diuretics for High Blood Pressure
This type of high blood pressure medicine helps your kidneys remove salt and water from your body. One of the results is that you have less blood volume circulating in your blood vessels. Less volume in the vessels leads to lower blood pressure.
Diuretics are often called "water pills." They are usually the first type of high blood pressure drug that your doctor will try. Here are some examples:
Moduretic (amiloride hydrochloride and hydrochlorothiazide)
Beta-Blockers and High Blood Pressure
This type of high blood pressure medicine makes the heartbeat slow down. Beta-blockers also keep your heart from pumping so hard. This makes blood go through your vessels with less force. The pressure inside your blood vessels goes down.