As we get older, we are likely to need a variety of different types of medications to manage our health and any ailments we have. For anyone, taking different pills and vitamins a certain number of times a day and at different times of the day can be confusing and difficult to manage. For seniors with memory problems, this becomes even more of a challenge.
Whether you’re trying to manage your own medications or are supporting a loved one with taking their medications, managing this properly is vital.
Why proper medication management is so important
Depending on the severity of the conditions being treated, a missed dose could be dangerous. This is why it is so important to stay on top of which pills need to be taken when and at what dosage. Because, on the other hand, taking too much can prove equally dangerous, as can mixing the wrong medications together.
Proper medication management can also involve monitoring your condition or that of your loved one, as this can alert you to any necessary changes in dosage. If their condition deteriorates, for example, then they may need to consult their doctor about increasing their dose or switching medications. Plus, being able to recognize the side effects of accidental overdose, no matter how minor, can help you to monitor whether a loved one is taking too much by mistake.
Tips for better medication management
Whether it’s for yourself or someone else, the best way to manage medication is to create a schedule or timetable to follow. You can put this up on the wall so that it’s somewhere noticeable and close to where you take or prepare the medication. A daily or weekly timetable can show what needs to be taken and when.
Pill boxes and organizers are also a handy tool, allowing you to keep the relevant pills organized in advance based on the time and day they need to be taking. This can be especially useful if you’re preparing medication for a family member who you do not live with, so you can get them organized for when you’re not there.
Make sure you or your family member understand how and when to take their medication and how to store it properly. You should also plan well in advance when it comes to refilling the prescriptions.
For seniors with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease, properly managing medication by themselves can be close to impossible, depending on their severity of degeneration. This is where round-the-clock care will often be necessary, in the form of in-home care, assisted living, or a retirement community.
If you need support with senior care, our retirement community in Bermuda Run can give your loved one the kind of care and support they need while still maintaining their independence. Get in touch if you are interested, or you can take a virtual tour of our community.