Since everyone is different, there is no one right answer to this question.
To get the answer that is right for you:
- Contact your doctor so you can discuss what to do about all your medicines
- Check your blood pressure about two times a day – keep your blood pressure in check!
Your doctor will need some information to help decide what to do about your medicines when you are sick. Your doctor will want to know about your symptoms, how long you have been ill, and if you have been able to eat and drink normally. Your age and your other medical problems are also important for your doctor to consider.
Many doctors believe that it is safe to take blood pressure medicines if you have a mild illness, such as a minor cold. However, there are times when you may need to hold off on taking your blood pressure medicines until you feel better. These include:
- If your blood pressure gets too low
- If you are dizzy or lightheaded
- If you have a high fever
- If you are vomiting, have severe diarrhea, or are not able to drink liquids normally
This is because if you have a high fever or are not able to keep down liquids you could become dehydrated. Taking blood pressure medicine if you are dehydrated could make your blood pressure get too low. In fact, “water pills” such as chlorthalidone, indapamide, and hydrochlorothiazide could make dehydration worse.
In addition to contacting your doctor, when you are sick, remember to keep your blood pressure in check!
Just like when you are well, keep track of your blood pressure when you are sick. Monitoring your blood pressure and discussing the readings will help your doctor decide if you should continue taking your blood pressure medicine. Many doctors will recommend you continue taking your medicine if your blood pressure is more than 130/80 mm Hg. If your blood pressure is lower than usual, they may recommend holding off on your medicine. These are just general guidelines—you and your doctor should make a plan that is right for you.
Remember, there is no one right answer.
If you're ill, ask your doctor if you should take your pill!