Once prescribed blood pressure medicine, you may need to take it for the rest of your life. Your blood pressure medicine is like your teammate - you and your medicine work together every day to keep your blood pressure down.
Medicines are not a cure for high blood pressure. Medicines can lower blood pressure, but if you stop taking them, your blood pressure goes back up.
Lifestyle changes can help lower blood pressure. Sometimes this allows people to stop or lower their dose of medicine. In one study, about 40 out of 100 people with mild high blood pressure were able to stay off blood pressure medicine with lifestyle changes. These people started exercising more, losing weight, eating less salt, and drinking less alcohol. The other 60 out of 100 needed to restart medicine even after making these changes. Nearly all (about 93 out of 100 people) in the group who stopped taking their medicine but didn’t make the lifestyle changes needed to restart their medicine.
If you have mild high blood pressure, you may be able to lower your dose or even stop taking your medicine with lifestyle changes like these.
However, if you have moderate to severe high blood pressure, this is less likely. You may be able to lower your dose, but you probably won’t be able to stop taking your medicine completely.
Most people will need to take blood pressure medicine for life. However, making lifestyle changes may keep the number of medicines and doses down.
Remember, your blood pressure medicine is like a teammate. You and your medicine need to work together every day.
Team up for life!