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High BP-just been diagnosed. Advice please?

(49 Posts)
Skydancer Sat 17-Feb-24 16:12:44

I've been under huge stress for about 4 years and now have been diagnosed with high BP and told I may have to take medication. Is there anything I can do to lower it myself? Advice seems to be somewhat conflicting. Do I rest or do I exercise? I will definitely cut out alcohol. My diet is good and I sleep well. Also - is it better to try to help myself and, if so, how? Or shall I resign myself to medication bearing in mind so many people seem to be on it and they seem to carry on as normal?

Grandmabatty Sat 17-Feb-24 16:19:07

I've been on medication for high blood pressure for years. I would suggest cutting down on salt in your diet and also caffeine. But I would follow the advice of your doctor

petra Sat 17-Feb-24 16:21:22

About a quarter of the uk population have high blood pressure.
My partner has had it all his adult life.
Nothing to worry about but you might find the first prescription might not suit so go back.
My partner goes to the gym 5 days a week. Be careful if taking Ibuprofen.

Catterygirl Sat 17-Feb-24 16:34:07

I’m not a doctor to offer proper advice. High BP seems to run in my family. Used to take 3 tablets a day without much thought except to remember to take them of course. Now as I lost a lot of weight I only need one tablet a day and the doctors are monitoring me with a view to taking me off medication completely.
My view is that the tablets save your life. Then it’s time to look for ways to reduce them. Stress isn’t good. My sister is very bad tempered but doesn’t have high blood pressure. She reckons that she lets all the aggravation out whilst I hold it in.

I do drink alcohol as I feel it helps reduce stress and my doctors are aware of this and it’s in moderation.
None of this is advice. Hopefully just reassurance that you can live a normal life with high blood pressure.

Best wishes

PernillaVanilla Sat 17-Feb-24 16:37:09

I was very annoyed to develop high blood pressure. The medication has brought it down but I am also trying to lose some weight, I have given up caffeinated drinks and alcohol , reduced salt consumption and I am drinking lots of hibiscus tea and eating beetroot and lots of fruit. I go to six exercise classes a week and will start running again when I have lost another half stone. Private GP said I could probably make some inroads on it doing this. NHS GP said I’ll be on the medication forever - her negative attitude is spurring me on to prove her wrong!

crazyH Sat 17-Feb-24 16:44:48

I too have high BP. The first medication I was given, caused my feet to swell. Changed it to Amlodipine5mg and I am fine. Been on it for years. I also got myself a BP Monitor although I hardly check it.

Knitandnatter Sat 17-Feb-24 16:45:26

"About a quarter of the uk population have high blood pressure.
My partner has had it all his adult life.
Nothing to worry about........"
Petra, high blood pressure is most certainly something to be concerned about, it can lead to a stroke or heart attack.

Liz46 Sat 17-Feb-24 16:52:11

I found that, when I go to the doctor, it’s because I’m worried about something so, when they take my BP, it is up.
I take my own BP at home, write it down and add them up before dividing by the number of readings. This is handed into the surgery to put on my records.

Grandyma Sat 17-Feb-24 16:57:34

My DH was diagnosed with high blood pressure years ago but with medication his BP is normal. We have a blood pressure monitor at home and he checks it when he remembers but it remains stable due to the BP meds.

petra Sat 17-Feb-24 16:59:45

I’m fully aware of the dangers of BP. My partners mother was hospitalised several times and his grandmother died with it.
When I say nothing to worry about that’s because the drugs work and monitoring your lifestyle.

Germanshepherdsmum Sat 17-Feb-24 17:00:16

I have had high blood pressure for years and it is very well controlled by medication - and I’m sure the much less stressful life of being retired helps too. I also watch my sodium intake. I wouldn’t try to control high blood pressure without whatever medication your doctor suggests - as I’m sure you know, it can kill so take it seriously and act on your doctor’s advice rather than trying to do without medication.

Chocolatelovinggran Sat 17-Feb-24 17:37:54

As GSM says, this is potentially a very dangerous condition. Take the medication. Lifestyle changes regarding alcohol or weight loss might be a good thing, but Amlodipine, or alternative, may save your life: the NHS is keen that we folks with high BP don't clutter up their stroke wards and their heart clinics.

HowVeryDareYou2 Sat 17-Feb-24 17:41:53

I'm not on BP tablets (yet, but soon will be), but my husband is.

Smoking, salt, and being overweight can cause/contribute to hypertension. I'm overweight but don't smoke. I don't use salt in cooking or on food. I don't eat a lot of processed foods (salt is even in biscuits, soups, cereals)

Germanshepherdsmum Sat 17-Feb-24 17:44:56

I use Lo-Salt as a low sodium substitute for ordinary salt, rather than go without altogether.

Jaxjacky Sat 17-Feb-24 17:56:11

Nothing wrong with making some lifestyle changes, as long as alcoholic is within the advised limits, that’s ok too.
If you’ve been advised medication take it, I have for some years, as said, it may be trial and error to find one that suits.

Katyj Sat 17-Feb-24 18:44:02

My bp shot up when we had a stressful house move aged 50. I hated the idea of medication so the Dr said he’d hold of the tablets if I improved my lifestyle, he promised it would be all that was needed.
I lost two stone, cut out salt and excersized every other day. It didn’t make any difference, Dr shrugged his shoulders and said There’s always one ! I’ve been on Losartan now for 10 years and it seems to work okay 🤞

Primrose53 Sat 17-Feb-24 19:52:52

Sometimes there isn’t much you can do to lower your BP.

My husband has had very high BP for decades. He has never smoked, barely drinks, is not overweight, gets plenty of exercise, eats a healthy diet and is a quiet, calm person. He does not suffer from white coat syndrome either. Those are all the main things GPs suggest you stick to but it’s made no difference.

He is now on 5 or 6 different medications to lower it. When he went into hospital last year for back surgery the anaesthetist and surgeon came to us as he sat gowned up and ready and said they dare not operate on him as his BP was so high that he could die or have a stroke on the operating table. His readings that morning were 216/93, 194/84, 202/87 plus many more equally high while they were trying to get it down.

I do hope you get it sorted but sometimes people are told they have “high” blood pressure when it isn’t that high at all. So it makes them worry even more and the BP goes up again.

Skydancer Sat 17-Feb-24 20:24:15

Thank you so much, everyone. I am around half a stone overweight so will attempt to lose it. I will cut back on alcohol too. But, as you all suggest, I will do whatever the doctor orders. I too felt annoyed with the diagnosis -it was as if I had done something wrong. I guess it's a getting older thing plus all the stress I've been under. I'm trying to control that by watching calming videos which do help a lot. Thank you all again.

welbeck Sat 17-Feb-24 20:30:18

if you are able to, i suggest walking more.

Deedaa Sat 17-Feb-24 20:51:01

As you say you are under a lot of stress I think worrying about what you are eating, drinking, and what exercise you are doing, may just add to the stress. Perhaps take the medication to lower the BP and then start to introduce healthier ways. You may find your medication can be reduced later.

Aveline Sun 18-Feb-24 07:25:11

My GP is currently trying to find the right combination of drugs for my BP. Unfortunately, Amlodipine 5mgs made no difference and 10mgs made my feet swell and hurt unbearably. Lisinopril was added and BP great - too great 110/60! Now my potassium level is too high so I'm off that combination. Blood test next week and another drug/combination of drugs. It's whole new interest for me suddenly.

Gwyllt Sun 18-Feb-24 08:04:21

As everyone says watch you weigh cut back on salt and exercise within you limitations All sound advice
Might I add look into breathing exercises and vagus nerve stimulation there is lots on the net suggesting they help with relaxation cardiac function and blood pressure control

Sparklefizz Sun 18-Feb-24 08:56:39

I started taking L-Theanine capsules to help my sleep and they have also reduced my BP. I have ongoing stress due to juggling 12 different health conditions and I didn't want to add high BP to my list so monitor it myself at home. It had not consistently reached a level necessary for medical intervention and as I don't respond well to a number of drugs, I prefer to stay away from them if at all possible.

Grandmama Fri 01-Mar-24 17:44:57

BP medication is on this horizon for me! I've just posted on yet another statin thread. High cholesterol and BP after a blood test and GP appt. I'm well within my weight range, have always eaten a very good diet so can't alter that any more and I walk between 15-20 miles every week. My high cholesterol is probably inherited and maybe the BP is. The BP does not give rise to any symptoms. I monitor my BP daily and it has gone down and been at an acceptable level for several weeks but has inexplicably suddenly gone up again so I might well have to take medication. It's always lower when I've been with DD2 and her dogs. A furry friend does help. Loads of advice on internet about lowering BP and how to take an accurate measurement.

Nana56 Fri 01-Mar-24 18:00:53

I would try and cut down on salt if you have any. Excercise might help if you can manage it. Good luck