Which Medications Should You Take?

Understanding blood pressure medications

A wide range of drugs are used to treat high blood pressure, with many resulting in significant reductions in systolic and diastolic blood pressure. However, you should never treat your blood pressure using medication without speaking to your doctor.

In this guide, we’ll look at some of the most common medications used to treat high blood pressure and examine not just their positive effects for patients, but their side effects and potential interactions with other medications.

Should you use medication to treat high blood pressure?

There are a variety of different categories of high blood pressure, and medication is both available and frequently used as a treatment option for all of them. However, the ideal treatment can vary based on the severity of your high blood pressure.

It’s important not to self-medicate if you have either Stage 1 or Stage 2 high blood pressure or prehypertension. Speak to your doctor to learn about the most suitable medications for improving your health and lowering your blood pressure.

What are the most common high blood pressure medications?

Many medications treat high blood pressure, either by inhibiting production of the hormones that contribute to high blood pressure or by targeting the receptors that process hormonal signals t your heart and blood vessels.

People with severe high blood pressure are often treated using more than one type of medication. Some of the most common medications used to treat Stage 1 or Stage 2 high blood pressure include:

ACE Inhibitors

These are drugs that prevent angiotensin – a peptide hormone – from being created in your body. As a result, your blood vessels are widened and your blood pressure is often reduced by a significant margin.

Beta Blockers

Beta blockers are drugs that target your beta receptors and prevent them the signals they create from reaching your heart and blood vessels. Beta receptors are found on your heart; beta blockers prevent stress hormones from binding to these receptors.

Because beta blockers prevent stress hormones such as adrenaline from binding to the receptors on your heart and other organs, they can have side effects, including fatigue, dyspnoea and nausea.

Calcium Antagonists

These drugs, also known as calcium channel blockers, reduce the ability of calcium to enter the cells of your heart and blood vessel walls. In addition to lowering blood pressure, many calcium antagonists slightly lower your heart rate.

Because of this, they’re often used to treat high blood pressure and heart-related conditions such as angina and irregular heartbeat.


Diuretics are a class of drug that encourages your body to excrete excess water and sodium. There are many types of diuretics; some are frequently used to lower high blood pressure by reducing the amount of sodium in the body.

Renin Inhibitors

These drugs inhibit the conversion of angiotensinogen to angiotensin I. Since this is one of the enzymes that leads to high blood pressure, renin inhibitors are frequently used in treating high blood pressure in adults.

Which blood pressure medications should you take?

There’s no perfect treatment to high blood pressure, and it’s essential that you talk to your doctor before commencing any drug treatment. You may benefit from one of the medications listed above, a combination or a different medication entirely.

Any medications used to treat high blood pressure should be combined with healthy lifestyle changes and a low-fat, low-sodium diet. Speak to your doctor not only about which medications can help you, but what you can do to lower your blood pressure.