Like many people my age, I have high blood pressure and take drugs to control this condition.
I also am a regular user of many common brands of over-the-counter pain medication.
However, I didn’t know that many common over-the-counter pain medications worsened my blood pressure problems.
This is a sensitive topic for me.
My father refused to treat his blood pressure and died from a severe stroke caused by high blood pressure. It wasn’t a “good death” and was preventable.
I don’t want to have a stroke like my father, so, whenever I see anything that could cause my blood pressure to rise, I take note.
A few days ago, I noticed a health alert telling me that non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can make your body retain fluid, decrease kidney function and increase blood pressure.
What You Need To Know
If you have high blood pressure, you should consult your doctor before taking common over-the-counter pain medication (especially in higher doses or over a long period).
The drugs in question include:
- Ibuprofen (Advil and Motrin);
- Aspirin (Bayer, Bufferin, Ecotrin, St. Joseph); and
- Naproxen (Aleve and Naprosyn).
What About Low-Dose Aspirin Taken To Prevent A Heart Attack?
What I have found regarding low-dose aspirin is mixed and unclear. According to an article published on the NIH website, the daily use of baby aspirin increases the risk of hypertension by approximately 18%.
However, the same article states…
Regardless of its effect on blood pressure, low-dose aspirin effectively prevents cardiovascular events in patients with and without hypertension, but its benefits should be carefully weighed against a potential increase in the risk of adverse effects such as gastric bleeding and hemorrhagic stroke, as well as a small increase in the risk of hypertension.
So, what is our advice? Learn more about these drugs and consult your physician.
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