When it comes to medications and seniors it can feel like they consume the entire rainbow of skittles sometimes. Medications can be easy to mix up throughout the day for elders and their care assistance. It is essential to seniors’ health that they are receiving the correct medication as well as the correct dosage.
Managing medication can be difficult for everyone, including a home care assistant. If you are struggling to manage your loved one’s medications, home care, and are looking for assistance, 24/7 Home Health Care located in Miami, Florida has skilled nursing care and offers 24-hour elder care assistance.
Sometimes all it takes is having a system and routine in place to provide seniors with the help they need to manage their medication. Here are BLANK tips to help caregivers and seniors safely manage and maintain their medication routine.
Put all Medication, Vitamins, and Supplements into One Secure Location
By keeping all of the medications in one location it is easier to keep track of everything and makes it harder to lose important prescription medication or supplements.
Although it may be more convenient to keep some medications next to your bed and some in the kitchen, or even in your purse, it is much safer to store them in one central neutral location.
It is also important to keep all medication in their original bottles that they were prescribed in. This way it is easy to monitor if you are being prescribed two of the same medications for a similar health problem.
If you, as an elder care assistant, notice that your patient, loved one, or friend is dehydrated, drip IV therapy and hydration may be a good solution to help them regain their strength and stay hydrated throughout the day. Nurses at 24/7 Home Health Care are able to provide seniors with 24-hour skilled nursing care to administer drip IV therapy and hydration.
Make Sure Medication is Stored Properly
Medication should be stored in a cool and dry place. This means that the car and bathroom are not the best places to store them. They should also be kept away from children and pets. Many of the medications seniors take are very dangerous for children and pets.
If medication needs to be stored in the fridge as prescribed by the doctor do so.
Keep Records of all Current Medications
Keeping a list of records of all current and even past medications is important to avoid any complications of medications mixing and creating a negative reaction in your body. When keeping records of your medications and supplements include the following:
- How often each medication is taken
- What is the dosage of each medication?
- Names of all the medications, vitamins, and supplements
- The provider/doctor of the medication
- What the medication is treating
- The duration of time it is taken for
Here is an example of a medication list that is easy to print out and fill out for the month.
Organize and Sort Medications for the Week
Using a pill organizer is a great way to organize medication for seniors. Many pill organizers have an AM and PM section to ensure that the correct medications are being taken at the correct time.
Pill organizers typically have room for a week’s worth of medication so you will only have to refill it 4 times a month. If any pills need to be cut in half it is easier and more efficient to do this ahead of time. When using a pill organizer and traveling be sure to keep all medication in the original bottle, however.
Check for Negative Drug Interactions
When taking multiple medications, vitamins, and supplements it’s important to check with your doctor to ensure no medications have a negative side effect on each other. If you are not sure you may contact your pharmacist or an online drug interaction checker.
If there are any negative interactions be sure to call your doctor or pharmacist right away. 24-hour skilled nursing care assistance will also be able to assist if there are any mix-ups.
Know the Instructions Clearly
Medications are meant to be taken by the doctors’ instructions. This reduces any negative side effects from happening when taking prescription medications. Some medications need to be taken in the morning while others at night. It is important to obey the instructions of the medications that the doctor prescribed.
If the doctor prescribed drip IV therapy and hydration for the elderly patient once a week in the morning it is important to stick to that and even make it a routine.
Use Reminders and a Tracking System
With a variety of medications being taken throughout the week, it can be easy to forget to take something. It is not only tough for seniors to manage medications, but also the caregivers as they may be taking care of multiple patients.
For those who are more tech-savvy, there are plenty of ways to remind yourself on your phone to take your medications such as through an alarm or reminder. If you prefer a pen and paper keep it in a well visible place such as the kitchen so you do not forget.
Know if There are any Side Effects of the Medications
If an elderly patient is starting new medication possibilities there are some side effects that they should be aware of as well monitor. These side effects could include stomach pain, headaches, skin irritations, and many more. If you notice anything major that could be detrimental to their health call the doctor right away.
Plan Ahead for Medication Refills
Many pharmacies have prescription delivery and pick up to make it convenient and easy to get your medication. Ask your doctor for a 60/90 day supply if possible.
Overall, when it comes to managing medications as a senior and caregiver it is especially important to manage medication safely and properly. If you are looking for assistance 24/7 Home Health Care is here to help you and your loved ones.