Are you aware of Beta blockers? If not, this blog will tell you all about it. 

These are a class of medications used to treat various conditions. Basically it works by blocking the effects of adrenaline on the body. They are called “beta blockers” because they target beta-adrenergic receptors in the body. These receptors are part of the sympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for the body’s “fight or flight” response. So, by blocking these receptors, beta blockers can help manage conditions such as high BP, heart rhythm disorders, and migraines.

What Are Beta Blockers?

Beta blockers work by binding to beta-adrenergic receptors in the body, which are located in various organs such as the heart, blood vessels, and lungs. When adrenaline binds to these receptors, it can increase heart rate, constrict blood vessels, and cause other effects associated with the “fight or flight” response. By blocking these receptors, beta blockers reduce the effects of adrenaline, leading to a decrease in heart rate and blood pressure.

Use of Beta Blockers

Let’s first get into beta blockers uses in this section. 

Firstly, beta blockers can help with high BP conditions. It does so by reducing the force with which the heart pumps blood and by relaxing blood vessels. This allows blood to flow more easily. 

Secondly, beta blockers can help people with abnormal heart rhythms. It works by slowing the heart rate and stabilizing the heart’s electrical activity. 

In some cases, beta blockers are prescribed to people with heart failure to improve heart function and reduce symptoms. Then, these blockers can also help relieve chest pain (angina) by reducing the heart’s burden and decreasing the demand for oxygen.

Are Beta Blockers Taken For Anxiety?

While beta blockers are mainly used to treat the above mentioned issues, they are sometimes prescribed to help manage symptoms of anxiety. These beta blockers for anxiety can help control physical symptoms. These symptoms can be issues like trembling, sweating, and a racing heartbeat.

Types of Beta Blockers

There are different types of beta blockers. Below you’ll find beta blockers list:

  • Non-selective Beta Blockers: These block both beta-1 and beta-2 adrenergic receptors. 
  • Selective Beta-1 Blockers: These target beta-1 adrenergic receptors found in the heart. 
  • Beta Blockers with Alpha-blocking Activity: These not only block beta receptors but also have alpha-blocking activity. This can further lower blood pressure. 
  • Water-Soluble Beta Blockers: These beta blockers are water-soluble. 

Beta Blockers Side Effects

Typically beta blockers are safe and well-tolerated. Yet, in some cases, beta blockers’ side effects can be witnessed. 

Common side effects are:

  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness
  • Cold hands and feet
  • Nausea and diarrhea

Then there are some severe side effects as well. 

  • Heart failure
  • Breathing issues
  • Blood sugar problems

Now when it comes to the right dosage, you must note that it depends person to person. Additionally, the health issues you face help physicians decide what’s the correct dose of beta blockers for you. 

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Bottom Line

Overall, beta blockers are necessary medications used to treat a variety of conditions. While they are typically used for heart related conditions, beta blockers may also be prescribed off-label for anxiety. Moreover, it’s crucial to understand the different types of beta blockers. Only then you can know the associated side effects with each of its types.