As your parents or other loved ones begin to age, it’s important to make sure they are following their medication schedule, especially those seniors taking multiple medications simultaneously.
We’re happy to provide some tips that offer helpful insight into medication management for seniors. Right off the bat, if you notice that your loved one has experienced a decline in vision, or can no longer drive to the doctor’s office or pharmacy, you may need to step in and assist them. Here are some tips to make sure you’re prepared.
Keep a medication record
Make sure you keep an updated list of all the medications your senior loved one is taking. The list should include brand names, dosages, frequency of the dose, side effects, the reason for taking the drug, and the healthcare provider who prescribed each medication. It’s also important to make sure the medications are stored at the correct temperatures.
Make sure instructions are clear for each medication
It’s absolutely imperative to follow the doctor’s instructions for each medication. This minimizes the risk of side effects, negative drug interactions, or reducing the drug’s effectiveness. Pay close attention to the labels, some medication need to be take with food, and some don’t. If you or your loved one feel any uncertainty, don’t hesitate to call the doctor or pharmacist and ask questions. Knowledge is power!
Go to as many appointments as you can
Getting information firsthand is always best. Especially when it comes to senior loved ones who may have compromised hearing, or memory issues. Having the doctor or nurse give you information directly will help you feel confident as you help oversee the medication management. While you’re there, review all their medications, and check to make sure they are still necessary. Discuss dosages, and if any should be discontinued due to how they might react with other prescriptions. Finally, just being there for moral support makes such a difference.
Help administer the medications
Start by creating a checklist that your parents can use daily to make sure they are taking their prescriptions as required. Put it somewhere where it won’t get lost, and will serve as a reminder every day. The list can be done manually on paper, or digitally on a computer or tablet.
Encourage loved ones to check off the list every time they take a medication, this will prevent any confusion later on. And if they need assistance administering a shot, such as insulin, discuss the easiest way to do so with the doctor. Organization will help put everyone’s mind at ease.
At Holiday Retirement, our mission is to make sure our seniors’ are the healthiest and happiest they can possibly be. Our friendly housekeepers, attentive servers at mealtime, and helpful maintenance technicians will go above and beyond to make life better for our residents. At Holiday Retirement, we want you to feel at home.
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