As we grow older, we may be faced with more health conditions that need to be treated on a regular basis. Plus, as we age, body changes can affect the way our medications are absorbed, leading to potential complications. For instance, the liver and kidneys may not work as well, which affects how a drug breaks down and leaves your body. And changes in your digestive system can affect the speed with which your meds get to your bloodstream. It is important to be aware that increased use of medicines and normal body changes caused by aging can increase the chance of unwanted or maybe even harmful drug interactions. Whether you are in your sixties or nineties, you should be extra careful when taking prescription and over-the-counter medicines. And if you’re caring for older loved ones, you should be aware of how to help them stay safe as well.

  1. Take medication as prescribed. Always follow your doctor’s directions about taking medications. There are typically important reasons to take a medication at a specific dose and time of day.
  2. Keep a medication list. A current list, including the times and reasons you take each one, will help your health care team to adjust your medications and identify potential interactions. Don’t forget to include any over-the-counter drugs, herbal medications, and supplements.
  3. Understand the storage instructions and follow them- because of moisture and heat, it is sometimes best not to store medicines in the bathroom.
  4. Be aware of potential interactions. Try this free online drug interaction checker for any concerns.
  5. Review medications with your health care provider.

The more you know about your medicines and the more you talk with your doctors and health care professionals, the easier it is to avoid problems with medicines. Companionship can also be an important safeguard to make sure the above recommendations are being followed. Medication reminders are one popular service that Senior Helpers’ caregivers provide to our clients. Remind your loved one that a second set of eyes can add a measure of security and comfort to their life, helping to maintain routines and stay at home for as long as possible.




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