Medical shops are generous enough to dispense some of the drugs without a prescription and the public is ignorant enough to purchase them without realizing the consequences. Even if some of them are aware of the impending risks their needs supersede everything else. Falling into this -category of high-risk over-the-counter medications are decongestants prescribed for cold. Down with a nose block and a sore throat? Its time for the regular dose of cold drops or other similar ones to help you come out of the nasty stuffy nose. While persistent use of these can have harmful effects on anyone those with high blood pressure must think twice before relying on such remedies for common cold.
A Clear Warning on Clearing Away Common Cold
According to the American Heart Association the use of decongestants to suppress cold can elevate blood pressure levels. Generally too, meds for cold and flu increase BP levels and their effects are pronounced in those already suffering from high BP. So, your trusted-upon decongestant that relieves congestion by reducing swelling and constriction of blood vessels in the nose thereby helping you breathe easily can also obstruct the efficiency of those drugs prescribed for controlling high blood pressure levels. Decongestants constrict blood vessels helping your sinuses by decreasing the fluid that clog them but the same constriction can be hazardous for those who have high blood pressure or heart disease. This is mainly because constriction of blood vessels increases heart rate as well as blood pressure levels which in turn creates panic in those already suffering from high BP rates and heart rate. Basically, any drug or product that constricts blood vessels and elevates blood pressure is not a good choice.
Nasal sprays are better than oral drops as they leave the person with fewer side effects but when they are overused (more than 3 days in a row) the tissues lining the nose and the sinuses become dependent on them making you resort to their use more often to enable a smooth breathing.
Be Cold towards Cold
Even healthy people devoid of any blood pressure changes are at an increased risk from these side effects and even those with diabetes, smoking habits and old age must use it with caution. Rather than worsening cold-related health problems the best is to let time decide your response to cold. But before everything is to prevent the occurrence of cold in the first place.
High blood pressure or hypertension is a common condition present in people across the world and every person suffering from it must discuss their choice of medications and other drugs with the physician. Their doctor must be well-aware of even the over-the-counter drugs that are consumed by their patient. And, before taking any medication the patient is requested to monitor his/her blood pressure numbers ensuring that they are not above 140/90 mmHg. Blood pressure guidelines have been revised of late for whose details you can always visit www.firsteatright.com.
There are studies showing positive association between the flu and tears in the inner layers of the aorta (largest artery carrying blood from heart to rest of the body) and more than 75% of aorta tears involve high blood pressure. Such aorta tears are called acute aorta dissection and blood passing through such a tear separates the inner layer from the outer layer. Rupture of the aorta leaks blood leading to fatal conditions.
AVOID FRAUD. EAT SMART.
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Dietitian & Nutritionist Dr. Nafeesa Imteyaz.