Clonidine is a medication used to treat individuals with high blood pressure and thereby reduces the risk of experiencing a heart attack or a stroke. The medication can be taken individually or along with a combination of blood pressure drugs.
How it works
Clonidine belongs to a group of drugs known as central alpha agonists. Therefore, the medication lowers blood pressure by reducing the effectiveness of certain undesirable chemicals in the brain. This in turn relaxes the blood vessels in your body and increases the efficiency of the blood circulation system.
The medication is used to treat a number of conditions including hypertension and certain kidney problems. The most beneficial quality of clonidine is its ability to treat people with various illnesses. This includes individuals with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and women going through menopause. Moreover, it is also useful in helping people who experience withdrawal symptoms due to smoking and narcotic habits.
The medication must be taken twice daily with or without food. It is best to take them in the morning and evening to ensure that there is a wide gap between both doses. If doses differ from each other, make sure to take the larger dose in the night since it will help you reduce the risk of side effects. Your physician might change your dosage according to your personal condition and response to the treatment. This medication must be consumed regularly in order to experience the full effect of the drug. However, this does not mean that you have to increase your dosage since doing so will only make your condition worse.
Listed below are some side effects that you might/might not experience during your treatment period.
Rapid weight gain
Extremely slow heart rate
Since some of these side effects are quite severe, make sure to contact your healthcare provider immediately.
Make sure to follow the guidelines mentioned below to ensure that you stay safe during the treatment period.
Do not get dehydrated or overhydrated – especially when exercising in the hot weather
Do not drive – Clonidine can impair your thinking
Avoid alcohol consumption – It can increase the risk of side effects
Never take both doses at the same time – even if you missed your first dose
Do not consume the medication if you become pregnant since it can affect the health of the baby
Do not crush, chew or bite the tablet since it can expose the entire drug in your mouth
Consult your physician if you want to change the dosage or timetable
When consuming Clonidine, do not stop taking the medication abruptly without consulting your healthcare provider. This can result in major withdrawal symptoms including agitation, shaking, nervousness and headache. It can also result in a sudden and dramatic rise in your blood pressure level. Therefore, do not stop consumption until your physician tells you to do so.
When using the medication on the long term, you might have to use it along with a combination of other drugs. In this case, make sure that these will not react negatively to each other and result in an allergic reaction.