It isn’t uncommon for a physician to prescribe more than one medication for those suffering from multiple conditions. However, this begs the question, are prescription drugs safe? When medication mismanagement occurs, it could be a potential health hazard. Therefore, it’s critical to speak to your physician and your pharmacist about drug interactions and how to properly take all medications. Let’s look at some additional tips for ensuring that your prescription drugs are safe and that no medication mismanagement occurs.
- 1 Tips for Prescription Medication Safety :
- 1.1 1. Ask your physician if your dosage is correct for your age.
- 1.2 2. Some prescription medications are not safe for seniors.
- 1.3 3. Always bring a list of your medications to doctor’s visits.
- 1.4 4. Monitor your prescriber’s behavior.
- 1.5 5. Monitor your loved one’s dosing.
- 1.6 6. Always maintain your medications list.
- 1.7 7. Have a firm understanding of the side-effects.
- 1.8 8. Discuss all previous adverse effects.
Tips for Prescription Medication Safety :
How can we ensure that our prescription medications are taken safely? It’s essential that you avoid many of the common medication mistakes, including taking more than what is prescribed or taking the medications incorrectly. There are many useful tools such as pill organizers, dispensers, and reminder services to help with these efforts.
Additionally, it’s vital that you remain proactive about the prescription drugs you’re taking. Here are more valuable tips to remember:
1. Ask your physician if your dosage is correct for your age.
For those who are reaching their “golden years,” it isn’t uncommon for the body to metabolize prescription drugs differently and for seniors to develop a sensitivity to come quicker as a result. It’s also possible for some to experience adverse effects more quickly than others, as well. It’s advisable to double-check with the pharmacist regarding age-appropriateness to ensure the dosing is correct and to see if a lower dose is more appropriate before tapering upwards.
2. Some prescription medications are not safe for seniors.
Speaking of seniors, there is a list of prescription medications that senior adults should either use with caution or not at all. You can obtain this list, as well as related data, from the US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health.
3. Always bring a list of your medications to doctor’s visits.
No matter if you’re taking over-the-counter medications, herbal supplements, or medications prescribed by another physician, bring this list or the actual bottles with you each time you visit the doctor. It’s critical that they have as much information as possible to prevent any drug interactions or adverse effects from occurring.
4. Monitor your prescriber’s behavior.
You can use a service called Prescriber Checkup, a simple tool that allows you to ensure your physician isn’t prescribing drugs that have been pulled from the shelves because they’re no longer safe. The tool is useful for those who are also looking for more information about the medications prescribed in their area.
5. Monitor your loved one’s dosing.
For those who have a loved one who is suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, a cognitive impairment, or dementia and are showing signs of confusion regarding the use of their medications, it’s critical that they do not manage their dosing. They may benefit from a reminder system, but those who are cognitively impaired may be experiencing a more serious situation. It can become harmful or fatal if medications are taken incorrectly.
6. Always maintain your medications list.
In addition to bringing your medications list with you to every doctor’s appointment, this list should also be kept up-to-date regularly in-between visits. On your list, you should include the names of each prescription drug, over-the-counter medicine, and supplements you’re taking, the dosage, how often you’re taking these medications, and why you’re taking them. Each time you stop taking a prescription for any reason, or a new drug is added to your routine; you must update this list.
7. Have a firm understanding of the side-effects.
One of the best ways to stay alert regarding any changes in your health is to know for sure what any potential side-effects or drug interactions could be for the prescription drugs you’re taking. It’s essential to contact your physician immediately if you notice any changes in your health. Because many side effects mimic numerous medical conditions, your health provider will need to see your prescription medications list to help diagnose the problem accurately.
8. Discuss all previous adverse effects.
This tip may sound obvious, but it often goes neglected. If you’ve experienced an adverse effect from taking a prescription drug, then your physician or pharmacist must have this information.
It’s possible to have a better understanding if prescription drugs are safe when you communicate well with your doctor and provide them with as much information as possible regarding current prescriptions and past side effects.
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