What to Know About Diuretics: Side Effects
Diuresis is a natural mechanism of water retention. Water retention occurs when the body loses fluid through perspiration or urination. When one drinks too much fluids, the kidneys excrete excess salts into urine (dehydration).
This causes water loss from the body. Dehydrated individuals are at risk for dehydration, which may lead to fatigue, weakness and even death.
Water pills are medications used to treat high blood pressure and other conditions associated with low levels of salt in the body. They are usually taken daily for several weeks before surgery. These medications have been shown to reduce the amount of time it takes patients to go into shock after heart attack, stroke or trauma.
Some studies show they might prevent kidney failure caused by excessive sodium intake during pregnancy.
The most common side effect of diuretics is nausea. Other possible side effects include headache, dizziness, diarrhea, constipation and muscle cramps. People taking diuretics should avoid drinking alcohol because it increases the amount of salt excreted into urine.
Drinking too much water can cause headaches and nausea due to increased sodium levels in the body.
How Do Diuretics Work?
Diuretics work by blocking the reabsorption of water in the kidneys. This causes sodium, potassium, and chloride to be excreted. As a result, water is also excreted. This lowers blood pressure and increases the flow of urine, which helps remove waste from the body.
How Much Water Should I Drink While Taking Water Pills?
It is important to drink plenty of fluids while taking water pills. If you don’t drink enough fluids, you can become dehydrated. Dehydration may cause dizziness and lightheadedness. Some water pills may cause the need to urinate more often. When this happens, it is important to be well hydrated. You should drink at least six to eight glasses of water each day while taking water pills.
How Do Water Pills Work?
First off, you should know that “water pills” and “water pills” are two different things. Water pills are a type of diuretic that causes the body to get rid of excess water in the form of urine, and thus reduces blood pressure. Water pills may also be known as “water tablets.”
Water tablets (or water pills), on the other hand, are drugs used specifically for recreational purposes to get high, such as ecstasy (an illegal drug popular among teenagers).
There are several different types of water pills, but they all have the same purpose: to get high. These drugs interfere with the brain’s ability to control chemicals related to mood and emotion. They can cause confusion and depression, and can also lead to death.
The drugs can be swallowed, snorted or injected.
Does Exercising While On Water Pills Make You Lose Weight?
Yes, however this is probably not the intention of the pill. You should not take water pills just to lose weight. In fact, you should not take water pills at all, for many reasons. First of all, they are dangerous and can kill you. Second of all, they can have serious side effects.
Besides the danger and side effects, weight loss will not be one of them. The only weight you will lose is water weight, which is temporary and not a good reason to take a potentially deadly drug.
Some people have also been known to experience an allergic reaction to this class of drugs. If you are already taking a diuretic for something else (such as high blood pressure), you may want to ask your doctor if you would be okay taking that drug, as they must be much safer for you than the over-the-counter stuff.
What Happens If I Stop Taking Water Pills?
If you do not take water pills anymore, nothing bad should happen. However, if you have been taking a higher dosage for some time, you may experience several negative side effects if you suddenly stop taking them. These side effects may include:
Headache Dizziness Nausea Vomiting Muscle aches Stomach pains Shaking Chills
While these side effects are not pleasant, they are not permanent and should go away in a few days. If the side effects are unbearable or last longer than a few days, contact your doctor immediately.
If you still decide to stop taking water pills after reading this, it is best to slowly cut down the amount you take each day until you are no longer taking any. This will help your body get used to not having the extra “help.”
What If I Take Too Much Water Pills?
If you take too much water pills, you should go to the emergency room immediately. Taking too much water pills can cause serious problems, such as:
Dehydration (a severe shortage of water in your body) Coma Liver failure Kidney failure Heart failure Death
Again, these side effects are very serious and can be fatal if not treated quickly.
Can I Overdose On Water Pills?
Yes, it is possible to overdose on water pills. Overdosing on water pills can cause many of the same serious side effects listed above. For example, if you overdose on water pills you may experience coma and possibly even death.
If you think you have taken too many water pills, you need to seek medical attention immediately. If you go to the emergency room, the doctors there should be able to pump your stomach in order to prevent any serious damage.
Even if you do not overdose and stop taking water pills, you may still experience side effects such as severe headaches and diarrhea. If this happens, drink a lot of water to replace the liquids your body is lacking. You can also try taking Imodium or Pepto-Bismol to help with the diarrhea.
What Should I Do If I Forget To Take Water Pills?
It is not a good idea to take more than the recommended dosage of water pills, even if you forget to take a dose. If you have forgotten to take a dose of water pills and it has been more than 12 hours since your last one, do not take an extra one. Instead, just continue your regular schedule and try to remember to take it on time from then on.
If it has been less than 12 hours since your last dose, you may take another one (following the normal dosing instructions). However, you should try to remember to begin your regular dosing schedule and not miss any more doses.
Water pills are almost 100% safe to use if taken as directed. Even if you have experienced negative side effects, you will almost certainly be able to continue taking them without incident if you start following the recommended procedure.
While water pills are safe to use, you should always remember to follow the instructions on your specific bottle. If you have any questions about using water pills, talk to your doctor before taking anything.
They may also be referred to as:
About Water Pills
You may have been prescribed water pills by your doctor if you have high blood pressure or swelling of the feet, ankles, or legs. They should help to decrease these problems by getting rid of the extra fluid in your body.
These pills can be purchased without a prescription, but your doctor may have to write a prescription for a stronger form of them.
Why Do Water Pills Help With Blood Pressure And Prevent Swelling?
Normally, the kidneys filter your blood to hold onto important substances and get rid of things that the body doesn’t need. When you take water pills, they change the way your kidneys filter your blood. Instead of filtering out important substances, they keep them in your body and get rid of water that your body doesn’t need.
How Do I Know If Water Pills Are Working?
If you take the pills on an empty stomach, you should start seeing their effects within the first two hours. The pills may make you feel like you need to urinate more often than usual. This is a normal side effect and may even occur right after taking a dose.
They may also make your skin more sensitive to sunlight. Be sure to wear sunscreen when going out in the sun while you are taking water pills. If you follow your doctor’s recommendations and take the pills exactly as they have prescribed, you will probably see positive changes in your blood pressure and swelling.
What Are The Possible Side Effects Of Water Pills?
Possible side effects of water pills, such as mild fatigue, dry mouth, constipation, and a light-headed feeling, are manageable and usually don’t last long even if you experience them. If you start to experience other side effects, make sure to contact your doctor right away.
If you are allergic to sulfa drugs or if you have kidney problems, you may experience severe allergic reactions or kidney damage if you take water pills. You should let your doctor know if you have any existing medical conditions before starting to take water pills. Water pills are usually safe for most people to take.
However, they may not be suitable for everyone.
How Should I Take Water Pills?
Take water pills exactly as your doctor has prescribed. If you do not understand anything on your prescription, ask your pharmacist for help.
It is most effective to take water pills on an empty stomach, at least one hour before eating or two hours after. For the best results, take the medication at the same time each day.
Water pills are usually taken on a short-term basis until your medical condition has been resolved. This means that most people who take them do not take them for more than a few weeks or months at a time. If you have been prescribed water pills to take long-term, follow your doctor’s recommendations for taking them.
To prevent dehydration from occurring, drink plenty of fluids while taking this medication.
Never skip your medication and remember to never take someone else’s medication.
Where Can I Find Water Pills?
Water pills can be found in most drug stores. They may be located behind the pharmacy counter or in the aisle where you find other over-the-counter medications. If you have any questions, be sure to ask your pharmacist for help.
How Much Do Water Pills Cost?
The cost of water pills varies depending on factors such as where you buy them and which brand you choose. Prices may also differ from one pharmacy to another. Generic water pills tend to be less expensive than name-brand water pills. Most health insurance policies cover the cost of prescription medications, including water pills. If you have questions about your specific coverage, be sure to speak with your insurer.
In 2007, the FDA received several reports of sudden deaths in patients who had recently taken the water pill valsartan. This prompted a recall of several medications containing valsartan that were due to potential manufacturing defects. This issue has since been corrected by the manufacturer, but it is still important to be aware of this recall in case you or someone you love takes this medication.
If you ever take water pills that are part of this recall, seek medical attention immediately.
What Precautions Should I Take With Water Pills?
If you are going to have surgery, including dental surgery, consult with your doctor before taking water pills as they may affect the way your body reacts to anesthesia.
Some people may experience a harmless darkening of the urine or an orange or brown color to their bowel movements. This is normal and not cause for alarm unless it lasts longer than a day or so. If this happens, you should consult your physician if you are concerned.
If you are pregnant, planning on becoming pregnant or breastfeeding, speak to your physician before taking water pills as they have not been studied for use in these cases.
If you are taking diuretics, as prescribed by your physician, it is recommended that you take your water pills at least several hours before or after the diuretic. Follow your doctor’s specific instructions about how long to wait.
If you take a potassium supplement, take it at least two hours after you take your water pills.
Always check the expiration dates on your water pills to make sure they haven’t expired.
Always store your water pills away from heat and light and in their original container.
If you are traveling, carry your water pills in their original container and keep them in a place where they won’t be crushed or overheated.
In an emergency, if you need water pills right away and don’t have access to your normal medication, over the counter water pills may be an option. Speak to your doctor to see if this is a suitable alternative.
Always keep water pills out of the reach of children.
What Are The Side Effects Of Water Pills?
Side effects of water pills may include:
Nausea or vomiting
Darkened color urine (otherwise known as “tea color” or “olive color”)
Black or orange colored bowel movements (feces)
If you experience prolonged nausea, vomiting, dark urine or black stools, seek emergency medical attention immediately.
In rare cases, water pills may cause a serious allergic reaction. Seek immediate emergency medical attention if you experience difficulty breathing, swelling of the face or throat, or hives.
Interactions With Other Medications
If you are taking any other medications, there are a number of possible interactions that could occur with your water pills. It is important to talk to your physician about all the medications you are taking to avoid serious complications. If you are uncertain about any possible interactions, ask your pharmacist for guidance or check the drug database on the FDA website.
In addition to any over the counter medications you may be taking, there are a number of other drugs that should not be taken with water pills. Below is a list of some of the more common ones. If you are taking any of these, you may not be able to take water pills or you may need to adjust the dosage.
Water Pills and Diuretics
If you are taking any of the following diuretics, you should not take water pills as they may increase the effects and side effects of both medications. You should seek medical advice before taking water pills if you are currently taking a diuretic.
Ethacrynic acid (Edecrin)
Water pills and Potassium supplements or high potassium foods
If you have been prescribed a potassium supplement or are eating a diet that is high in potassium, it may not be safe to take water pills. Also, high levels of potassium in your body can increase the side effects of water pills. Water pills may also lower your potassium levels so your doctor may need to monitor you carefully.
If you have been advised by your physician to take a potassium supplement or eat a diet that is high in potassium, ask them before taking water pills.
Other Medications That May Interact With Water Pills
There are a number of other medications that may interact with water pills. These include:
Rifampin (Rifadin or Rimactane)
Other drugs that may increase the likelihood of water pill side effects include:
NSAID pain killers such as ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil) and naproxen (Alleve), and many others.
phenothiazine, a type of medication used to treat schizophrenia.
checking your blood pressure
How Do I Take Water Pills?
Always follow the dosage instructions provided by your physician. Dosage amounts may vary depending on the strength of the water pills and it is essential that you take them as prescribed. If you take too much water pill you may experience side effects and if you don’t take enough you may not get any benefits.
If your medication comes with instructions on how to take the drug, follow those instructions. If you need additional information, read the information below.
What water pills can I take with food?
Many water pills don’t require you to take them with a meal. However, some water pills are safer if you take them with food because they may cause stomach irritation. For instance, hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ), should be taken with food. If you are taking indapamide (Lozol), vitamin B-12 should not be taken at the same time as you take water pills as this can lead to severe nausea and vomiting.
Can I take water pills with milk?
Most water pills can be taken with milk or other dairy products.
How do I store my water pills?
Water pills should be stored in a cool, dry place, such as a cupboard or drawer. If you are concerned that someone in your household may accidentally take a water pill, it may be best to store them in a safe or lockable cabinet.
It is important that you do not let water pills get too hot or too cold, as this may cause the medication to break down or become less effective. If water pills are left in a hot car for example they may become less effective. It is best to keep water pills in a place that has a normal room temperature.
Do I need to follow any special instructions?
Before taking water pills, you should tell your physician about any allergies that you have, as well as if you have or have had any of the following conditions:
If you are pregnant or think that you may be, you should consult your physician before taking water pills.
Sources & references used in this article:
Moderate sodium restriction and diuretics in the treatment of hypertension by J Parijs, JV Joossens, L Van der Linden… – American heart …, 1973 – Elsevier
Some reflections on mechanisms of action of diuretics by RF Pitts – The American Journal of Medicine, 1958 – Elsevier
Old antihypertensive agents-diuretics and β-Blockers: Do we know how and in whom they lower blood pressure? by ED Freis – JOURNAL-AMERICAN ACADEMY OF …, 1995 – MOSBY-YEAR BOOK INC