With as many as 10,000 prescription drugs available in the United States, it’s no surprise that so many seniors – approximately one in three – are taking a minimum of five of them each and every day. And family caregivers recognize firsthand the struggles of medication management for seniors. In fact, studies show that as many as 55% of prescription drugs are being taken incorrectly for a variety of reasons, and the repercussions can be incredibly dangerous.
Reduce the risk for mistakes with these medication management tips for seniors, courtesy of one of the best providers of senior home care in Burlington, IA and the surrounding area – Advanced Home Health Care.
First, be sure to educate yourself on each medicine. If you’re unsure of the proper dosage, management or side effects of a senior’s medications, ask the health care provider or pharmacist for the following types of details:
- The name of the drug (brand and generic)
- Why the medicine is being recommended
- The length and duration for taking the drug
- The proper dosage and time of day to take the prescription
- Potential side effects and drug interactions, in addition to how the medicine should be taken (for example, on an empty stomach, with a full glass of water, etc.)
Additionally, make sure to ask the senior’s physician to periodically perform a medication review to verify which meds are still required and which ones could potentially be stopped.
Create a current list of all meds. Creating a thorough list of all prescribed drugs, OTC medications, and vitamins and supplements that the senior is taking can be a great help at doctors’ appointments. The list should cover all of the information above, plus:
- The shape, size and color of the medicine (include a picture of the drug if possible)
- The prescribing physician’s name and telephone number
- The date each medication was first taken, and whether or not it should be refilled and taken continually
- The date the list was last updated
As one of the top-rated providers of home care assistance in Burlington and the surrounding area, we can ensure proper medication management for seniors, as well as provide a full range of customized home care services to boost health and quality of life. Contact us at 800.791.7785 for more information and to find out if our services are available in your area.