Beta blockers affect the sympathetic nervous systems

Beta Blockers and the Sympathetic Nervous System

Beta blockers are medications that modify the normal processes of the sympathetic nervous system by lowering cardiac activity and tension. The sympathetic nervous system in the human body is in charge of activating the autonomous nervous system, popularly known as the fight or flight response (\"Beta Blockers: Types, Side Effects, Interactions\", 2017).

The Effects of Excessive Adrenaline Release

Adrenaline is released when the autonomic/involuntary nervous system is triggered, causing a person to react to stressful events. Adrenaline is released in the body, which causes an increase in heart rate and blood pressure, as well as excessive sweating, anxiety, and palpitations. Excessive adrenaline release can result in hypertension, heart attack, angina, glaucoma, and migraine in the patient (\"Beta Blockers: Types, Side Effects, Interactions\", 2017). When the patient tests positive for the above disorders, the general practitioner may be in a better position to prescribe beta blockers to alter the normal operations of the nervous system which slows the heartbeat and blood pressure.

Hypertension in the African American Population

Study shows that beta blockers are not effective in reducing hypertension problems in the African American population. Hypertension (high blood pressure) problems occur at a young age for the African American population as opposed to other groups in the United States.

Factors Contributing to Hypertension in African Americans

African Americans are more likely to develop high blood pressure complications due to the genetic makeup of the African descent. African Americans are more sensitive to salt than other groups in the United States which puts them at a higher risk of developing high blood pressure complications.

Environmental factors according to research is another reason for the reduced effectiveness of beta blockers in African Americans. 41% of African Americans have high blood pressure complications in the United States compared to 21% of the whites which researchers say is as a result of social discrimination and economic inequality. These high blood pressure complications are as a result of increased age, excessive weight, eating diets with too much salt, low intake of potassium, smoking, and families with a history of blood pressure (Cold et al., 2017).

Preventive Measures for High Blood Pressure

With these kinds of risks, every person should take necessary preventive measures to reduce the risk of developing high blood pressure complications.


Beta Blockers: Types, Side Effects, Interactions. (2017). Medical News Today. Retrieved 30 March 2017, from

Cold, F., Health, E., Disease, H., Management, P., Conditions, S., & Problems, S. et al. (2017).High Blood Pressure in African-Americans. WebMD. Retrieved 30 March 2017, from

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