Hypertension (high blood pressure) is a risk factor for heart disease. For years, low daily aspirin doses have been considered safe and healthy to prevent heart disease.
Aspirin is known to lower blood pressure and prevent strokes. Experts believe that aspirin’s cardiovascular health benefits are due to its antiplatelet activities its ability to thin the blood and make it less sticky. This is not related to its ability to alter blood pressure.
Aspirin and Blood Pressure
Research on the relationship between high blood pressure and aspirin is still limited and controversial.
These are the key points we know so far.
- Aspirin taken before bedtime in people with mild or untreated hypertension (pre-hypertension) can reduce blood pressure.
- Preeclampsia is a serious condition that can be fatal for pregnant women at high risk of developing it. A low-dose aspirin dose at bedtime, but not at night, can help lower blood pressure.
- Aspirin doesn’t seem to affect blood pressure in people with hypertension taking high blood pressure medication for a long time.
- Aspirin (a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medication) is a nonsteroidal antiseptic drug (NSAID). NSAIDs can raise blood pressure in hypertension patients.
There are many reasons to take daily aspirin.
Your healthcare provider may recommend a low daily aspirin dose in certain situations.
Take, for example:
- In the past, you have suffered a stroke or heart attack.
- Stable coronary artery disease (CAD), or peripheral artery disease
- Preeclampsia is a high-risk condition in pregnant women.
Daily aspirin is not recommended if you are taking it to lower your blood pressure or for any other reason.
Guidelines from the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology (ACC) suggest that daily aspirin usage may be dangerous. It thins your blood, increasing the risk of internal bleeding.
AHA, ACC and FDA advise patients not to take aspirin without discussing the matter with their healthcare providers.
Aspirin can cause serious side effects.
Aspirin can cause serious bleeding in the stomach, small intestines and even the brain.
- Other than bleeding, there are other issues such as stomach problems or heartburn.
- Failure of the kidneys
- Liver injury
- Tinnitus, or hearing loss, is often caused by high daily aspirin.
Some people might also be allergic or intolerance.
If Your Healthcare Provider Recommends Aspirin
You must follow your healthcare provider’s instructions if you are permitted to take low-dose aspirin daily. You could experience side effects or complications if you take the wrong dosage or incorrectly use aspirin.
Before you start aspirin, there are other issues that you should discuss with your healthcare provider.
- How much and what kind of alcohol you can consume
- You should not take certain medications or supplements (e.g., aspirin and another NSAID such as ibuprofen increase your risk of bleeding).
- You should consider whether or not to stop taking your aspirin 12 if you are going through surgery.
- What to do if you notice symptoms (e.g. black or bloody stool)
Lowering your blood pressure
Your healthcare provider may recommend lifestyle changes and/or safe and effective medication for high blood pressure.
These lifestyle changes are examples of how to do it:
- Restricting salt in your diet
- Losing weight, if you’re overweight or obese
- Exercise at least 30 minutes per day, every day
- Be careful with alcohol intake.
- Quitting smoking
Your healthcare provider might recommend the following medications:
- Thiazide diuretics
- Calcium channel blockers
- Angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors
- Angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs)
One Word from Our Side
Aspirin should not be used as a primary treatment for high pressure. This is true even in certain cases. Aspirin can cause bleeding and other complications. You should consult your healthcare provider before taking it.