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Why Isn’t My Blood Pressure Medication Working?

November 11, 2014

controlling_blood_pressureWhen you have high blood pressure, you want to believe you can count on your medication to get it under control. But what do you do when your medication isn’t working?

For starters, don’t panic. There could be several reasons—or a combination of reasons—that lead to your medication not working. By working together with your doctor to determine the issues, you can create a new plan of action for long-term health.  

First, let’s take a look at some of the reasons that could lead to a need to reexamine your medication.  

Inaccurate Testing  

There are several factors that could affect your blood pressure tests and lead to inaccurate readings. When your doctor doesn’t have an accurate blood pressure reading, he or she can’t prescribe an accurate medication dosage.    

  • Doctor’s offices make many people nervous, which can lead to elevated blood pressure. This is sometimes called “white coat hypertension.” Make sure you take deep breaths and do your best to relax before having your blood pressure taken.

  • If you’re concerned if your at-home readings are inaccurate, bring your home unit to your doctor’s office and let your physician double check your process. Small details, such as an improperly sized cuff, can make a difference in accuracy.

  • Your doctor will also likely want to check the accuracy of their tests as well. Ask him or her to take multiple readings over a period of time that allows you to relax.  

Having accurate test results is the first step to determining the right course of medication. Talk to your doctor about other possible variables that could lead to an inaccurate reading.  

Medication Mismanagement  

Incorrect dosing can make your blood pressure medication less effective, especially if you’re juggling multiple medications and having difficulty keeping track of your dosing schedule.  

You might also be taking other drugs that can interfere with your medication’s ability in controlling blood pressure. Make sure your doctor has a full understanding of the other medications you take—from pain relievers, to decongestants, to oral contraceptives—to avoid any complications.  

Diet and Weight Control  

While medication can work wonders to lower blood pressure, it needs to be combined with a healthy diet and controlled weight. Being overweight or consuming a diet with too much salt or processed food can raise your blood pressure and make it difficult for your medication to work.  

Discuss your lifestyle choices with your doctor to see if they might be having adverse affects on your medication. Then work to make the necessary changes.  

High blood pressure can be easily managed with the right medication and diet. However, when your medication isn’t working, you don’t want to wait to find out why. 

While there could be several contributing factors, it’s important to get to the bottom of your health problems as soon as possible. If you’re worried about your blood pressure, request an appointment through our Patient Portal or call your doctor’s office today.