If you are suffering from high blood pressure and come down with a cold there is no need to suffer without the aid of cold medication. The main thing is to choose an over the counter cold medication wisely. There are many cold medications that can make your high blood pressure worse by increasing it but there are also medications that are very safe. Here are some suggestions to follow when choosing over the counter cold medications.
The most popular medication used while suffering from a cold is decongestants but it is should be a big concern for those that suffer from high blood pressure. These medications work by narrowing the blood vessels in your nose, relieving the congestion that goes with a cold. The problem arises from how the decongestant works. This type of medication works by narrowing blood vessels but not just those found in the nose they work on all blood vessels in the body. This can cause other blood vessels to be altered in other parts of your body as well and cause your blood pressure to increase.
Decongestants should be avoided for anyone that suffers from high blood pressure if it contains pseudoephedrine, ephedrine, phenylephrine, naphazoline and oxymetazoline. It is extremely important that you read the label on any medication and consult with your doctor and pharmacist before taking any medication. If you find yourself really congested it is much safer to turn on a humidifier or go to your bathroom and breathe the steam from the shower. You can also use saline nasal washes to help your congestion.
Medication without decongestants
While it is wise to avoid decongestants there are medications for colds that can be taken by people with high blood pressure but you still have to be very careful of the ingredients. Some of the drugs such as Coricidin HBP may not contain decongestants but it contains other drugs that could interact with high blood pressure. Other ingredients to watch out for with these types of drugs are dextromethorphan. If you decide to take this medication consult your physician first and only take the medication as it is prescribed.
Safer medications for cold symptoms
Usually with colds come aches, pains and fever that may make you feel miserable. If you’re suffering from these symptoms, there are a few medications that you can take safely. Aspirin is a drug that is widely used without many side effects especially for those with high blood pressure. Acetaminophen or Tylenol will help you feel better safely. There are many others on the market that are safe to take for these types of symptoms but again always check the label and then discuss the usage with your pharmacist.
Things you can do to help yourself
Anyone that is suffering from a cold needs plenty of rest to give your body time to fight off the virus. Fluids are a must and should be taken more than usual to prevent dehydration and to get rid of the extra mucus. If you’re suffering from a sore throat try gargling with warm, salt water. Use a neti pot to get rid of some of the congestion in your nasal passages and sinuses. This may seem like very basic things to do if you are suffering but it is so much better than taking a medication that could potentially hurt you by raising your blood pressure.
People with high blood pressure must take care when they are taking medication. Take extra care when choosing medication and try to take as little as possible even when you find one that is considered safe. To do this correctly you need to be informed of the potential harmful medication that is out there. Never take anything without discussing it with your doctor and pharmacist first. They know the interactions that may occur when the wrong medication is taken. Ask them first they are a wealth of information and can help keep you safe.