(NAPSI)—Colds and flu bring special considerations for people with high blood pressure, especially those on blood pressure medication. Here’s how to keep your blood pressure stable:
DO: Keep track of medication. The American Heart Association’s online tools at www.heart.org/hbp include a downloadable chart to manage medications and a tracker that lets people set up text message reminders, text in their readings, track their blood pressure and connect with providers.
DON’T: Miss your flu shot. People who get a flu shot may reduce their risk of heart attack or stroke. Stay away from people who are sick and wash your hands regularly.
DO: Read labels on over-the-counter (OTC) cold and flu medicines. Look for warnings to those with high blood pressure and who take blood pressure medications. Some ingredients in cold and flu medicines can affect blood pressure. Decongestants, used for a stuffy nose or congestion, and some pain relievers, such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), are known to raise blood pressure.
- naproxen sodium
Check with your doctor before taking these medicines. A decongestant should be used for only the shortest amount of time possible-and never by someone with severe or uncontrolled high blood pressure.
DON’T: Try to replace your prescriptions with supplements. There are no special pills, vitamins or drinks that can substitute for prescription medications and lifestyle modifications. Talk to your health care provider before taking any over-the-counter drug or supplement that claims to lower blood pressure. “Your doctor and other health care providers should know which over-the-counter medicines or supplements you are taking,” said Willie E. Lawrence, M.D., chief of cardiology at Research Medical Center, Kansas City, Mo. “If something claims to be ‘natural’ or you don’t need a prescription, it’s not necessarily benign. It’s still a substance that has an effect on your body.”
DO: Work with your health care practitioner. “If you have high blood pressure, it’s important to know that some medicines, even supplements, will affect you differently,” Dr. Lawrence adds. “If you’re struggling to keep your pressure controlled, review your routines—including over-the-counter medicines and supplements—and talk with your doctor about changes you can make. You should never be too busy to manage your blood pressure.”
Learn more at www.heart.org/hbp.
- Coricidin HBP, product of Bayer Consumer Health, is a sponsor of the AHA Hypertension Web content area.
Responsible journalism is hard work!
It is also expensive!
If you enjoy reading The Town Line and the good news we bring you each week, would you consider a donation to help us continue the work we’re doing?
The Town Line is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit private foundation, and all donations are tax deductible under the Internal Revenue Service code.
To help, please visit our online donation page or mail a check payable to The Town Line, PO Box 89, South China, ME 04358. Your contribution is appreciated!
- FOR YOUR HEALTH: Small Changes Can Mean Big Differences In Blood Pressure Control
- FOR YOUR HEALTH: Can You Afford an Unexpected Hospital Bill? Preparing Your Family for Unforeseen Costs
- Debunking the myths about donating bone marrow
- FOR YOUR HEALTH: Do I Need Bunion Surgery?
- FOR YOUR HEALTH: Age Healthier With These Five Tips
- FOR YOUR HEALTH: New Brain Health Initiative Could Unlock Mysteries Of Alzheimer’s, Dementia
- FOR YOUR HEALTH: Cold, painful fingers can mean a serious disease
- FOR YOUR HEALTH: Why It’s Wise To Hire Veterans With Disabilities
- FOR YOUR HEALTH: Long-Distance Care-giving
- FOR YOUR HEALTH: It’s Never Too Late To Achieve A Healthy Weight