WHAT IS Blood Pressure?
When your heart beats, it pumps blood round your body to give it the energy and oxygen it needs. As the blood moves, it pushes against the sides of the blood vessels. Your blood pressure reading is based on two measures called systolic and diastolic. The systolic (top) number is the measure of the pressure force when your heart contracts and pushes out the blood. If your blood pressure is too high, it puts extra strain on your arteries (and your heart) and this may lead to heart attacks and strokes.
Here is a list of some of the common medicines to help control high Blood pressure.
Angiotensin II Receptor Blockers (ARBs):
ARBs relax blood vessels by blocking a chemical (angiotensin II) that causes blood vessels to narrow or tighten. The drug’s relaxing effect allows blood to flow more easily through the body. This helps to lower blood pressure. e.g. Telmisartan, Irbesartan, Losartan, Olmesartan, Valsartan etc.
Angiotensin II Converting Enzyme Inhibitors (ACE):
ACE inhibitors relax blood vessels by reducing the production of an enzyme needed to produce a chemical (angiotensin II) that causes blood vessels to narrow or tighten. This allows blood to flow more easily through the body, which helps to lower blood pressure. e.g. Ramipril Prindopril, Lisinopril, Enalapril, Trandolapril, Captopril, Fosinopril, Cilazapril, Quinapril etc.
Beta Blockers slow down the rate of the heartbeat, the pumping force of the heart and hence decrease the workload on the heart muscle. These actions help to lower blood pressure.e.g. Atenolol, Metoprolol, Carvedilol, Bisoprolol, Propranolol etc.
Diuretics (Water Pill):
Diuretics are often called “water pills.” They increase the amount of salt (sodium) and water that your kidneys excrete. This reduces the volume of blood in your body and helps to lower blood pressure. e.g. Hydrochlorothiazide, Chlorthalidone, Indapamide etc.
Calcium Channel Blockers (CCBs):
Calcium channel blockers widen (dilate) your blood vessels, letting blood flow through more easily. By relaxing your blood vessels, your blood pressure drops and your heart doesn’t have to work as hard. Some calcium channel blockers also slow the heart. e.g. Amlodipine, Nifedipine, Felodipine, Diltiazem etc.