Most older adults are taking medications that enable them to have a better quality of life. Seniors would struggle without these medications, since they have a massive impact on their health. However, what you need to be aware of as well is that medicines can also harm your senior’s health. If not taken correctly, medicines can even worsen the symptoms they are supposed to treat. And not just that. Perhaps the medicines they are taking are not improving their health.
In this article, we will explain the most common medication problems and the ways to avoid them.
Beware of the Side Effects
Many medications have a long list of undesired side effects. They don’t occur in everyone taking these medications, but this doesn’t mean you should ignore them.
Those which affect balance and cause thinking problems include medicines prescribed for sleeping issues and reducing anxiety, anticholinergics, nausea, depression, allergies, etc.
When taking sedatives or anticholinergics, you should be extra careful. Check out all the side effects and see whether you really need to take this medicine.
Are the Meds Working?
Your senior has been taking a drug that a doctor had recently prescribed, but you are not noticing any improvements. Then you start questioning if these drugs work. When you notice the symptoms are not improving, consult the doctor who prescribed them. They should review the treatment and either change the dose or end the medication. If they don’t have any effect on your senior, then taking them is just wasting money and time.
It is a common situation for a senior to take multiple drugs, supplements, and vitamins. In some cases, they can interact and cause certain undesirable issues. You never know how two or more drugs will interact, thus it is important to inform your doctor of everything you take. This information is available on the internet, but it is always better to talk to a doctor. You can even ask a pharmacist for the list of drugs with potential interactions.
If you forget to tell the doctor about your other medications, and you notice a potential problem, don’t immediately stop taking anything or change a dose by yourself. This can be extremely dangerous! Contact a pharmacist or a doctor as soon as possible.
Medications Are Too Expensive
People who are on a tight budget and don’t have enough money to buy all the medications prescribed by their doctor tend to skip doses. Worst case scenario, they don’t even buy the medicines they need.
First of all, see if the drugs that you are using are effective. If they are not delivering the goods, consult your doctor to abandon them and save money. Second, try to find ways to lower the costs. Do research and see whether some other Medicare program would be better for your older adult. Also, you can try to find less expensive drug brands. Pharmacists know the best, so they can tell you what substitutes you can take. Also, ordering online can significantly reduce the costs.
This is one of the most common medication problems. Many seniors take several medications, and it happens sometimes they forget to take one. Also, they can miss doses, take too much, or not enough. Skipping a dose brings great risks, so this medication problem should be taken seriously.
To avoid it, always use a medication reminder. They are usually made for the whole week, and you can fill them at the end of the week. That way you can be sure your loved one will always take their proper dose.
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