Doctor’s Desk:When can I stop taking my anti hypertensive drugs?
People often confuse these two words; chronic and severe. Many times people think that whatever is chronic is severe and whatever is severe is chronic.
Hypertension is a chronic disease most of the time, especially essential hypertension. This means that the disease will be there permanently and one would have to keep using the medications for a life time.
So you cannot stop your anti hypertensive drugs as you wish because hypertension is a chronic disease.
When you see your doctor for clinic visits they may reduce the dose of your medications if there is need or increase it or leave it as it is depending on how well controlled your blood pressure is.
Sure you’ve heard about stroke
Many people that had a stroke are people that stopped their anti hypertensive drugs or drugs for diabetes without their doctor’s advice. They probably felt tired of the medications and did away with them.
People with stroke could go ahead to make a full recovery, some suffer long term effects that may require mobility aids like wheelchairs, scooters and crutches, some may even lose their lives.
How to deal with side effects
Side effects of anti hypertensives may include dizziness, erection problems in males, headaches, dry cough, etc. Many clients simply stop their drugs when they experience these side effects, truly it can be disturbing.
If you are experiencing any side effects to your drugs simply inform your doctor, there are so many classes of drugs for the condition, all he/she will have to do is prescribe another drug for you from another class of anti hypertensives or reduce the current dose, don’t take the decision alone.
I will use herbs to control my blood pressure or blood sugar
I’m sure many doctors have come across clients that insist on stopping their medications and choosing a herbal alternative.
Well, the only way you can be sure the herb is working for your blood pressure or blood sugar is to continuously check your blood pressure and blood sugar while you are taking the herbs.
From my modest experience, many of the so called alternatives are fakes and you don’t want to risk your life that way, my advice is stick to your meds but if you must take herbs ensure it’s working by continuously measuring your BP or blood sugar, it’s simple logic, if the herb works then your BP or blood sugar will remain controlled, please don’t do it blindly, it’s your life we talking about.
The issue with herbs…..
Yes some herbs do give results, the downside to most herbal concoctions in our Naija area is that most of the herbs are poorly researched. There is no standard dose. There is no profile for the possible side effects and indications, the same herb for piles is given for constipation.
Herbs affect the kidneys and the Liver
Another down side to the herbs we have around is that they are not purified to contain only the active ingredients that is desired. Aside from the therapeutic chemical in the herb there are a lot more other chemicals contained in the mix that are toxic to your system. Some of these toxic substances damage the kidneys and the liver later in life after a prolonged exposure to the toxic chemicals in the herb.
Parting words on hypertension and diabetes
Pleading to you with whatever you believe in, please don’t stop your drugs without doctor’s advice, chronic diseases are life long conditions and the medication is for life most of the time.
Please stick to the advice to avoid stroke, heart attack and kidney failure. Use your meds and stay healthy.So many people have been on drugs for diabetes and hypertension for as long as fifty years and are living happily and normally.
See you later on doctor’s desk….