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I sometime forget to take my medication. What should I do?
Here are some tips to help you remember to take your medication:
– Make taking medication part of your daily routine. Take it right before or after another activity that you do every day, such as dressing, eating breakfast (if taking the medication with food is okay), taking a shower, going to bed – whatever is appropriate for you.
– Try placing the medication vial in a place where you will see it. Near the coffee pot, by the door, or next to your keys are a few good places. Keep in mind that the place you choose should be out of the reach of children and the medication is away from strong light, heat, and humidity.
– Set an alarm (on your watch, clock, electronic organizer, cell phone, laptop, or iPad) to remind you when it’s time for your next dose.
– Get a friend to remind you.
– Leave notes around the house where you will see them. Consider places such as the bathroom mirror, refrigerator door, TV remote control, or next to the place where you put your wallet or purse.
> You might have to mix and match these ideas to find what works for you <
If you still having trouble remembering to taking your medications after trying these tips, then we highly recommend enrolling into one of our Medication Adherence Programs to ensure greater results.
How do I store my medication?
– Keep your medication out of the reach of children.
– If your medication needs to be protected from light, keep the medication in its original amber containers dispensed by our pharmacy.
– If your medication needs to be refrigerated, and you do not have a fridge available (for example, if you are working outside or on the road all day), try using an ordinary cooler with an ice pack. We dispensed all fridgerated medicine with an ice pack.
– Don’t store multiple medications in the same vial, as this makes it hard to keep track of which medications are which, which doses have been taken, and what the expiry dates are.
– Some medications also have special instructions for storage. Check for special instructions on your prescription label.
– If you are unsure of how to store your medication, ask your pharmacist.
I am worried about the side effects of the medication. What should I do?
Here are a few tips to help you cope:
– Find out more about your medication’s side effects by talking to your doctor or pharmacist.
– If you think you are experiencing side effects, always let your doctor or pharmacist know! Talk to your doctor or pharmacist about the side effects that you are concerned about. They may be able to suggest ways of avoiding or coping with these side effects.
– Some side effects only occur when you start taking a medication or when a dose is increased, but then go away after you have taken the medication for a while. Other side effects can be a sign of a serious reaction to the medication, that’s why you need to talk to a health care professional.
– If side effects are too much of a problem, your doctor may prescribe a different medication to treat your condition.
My medication container is hard to open. What should I do?
– Non-childproof lids: Most medications are dispensed in childproof containers. Childproof lids can be very difficult to open. If you are having trouble, ask your pharmacist for non-childproof lids, also known as ‘snap caps’ are easy-to-open vials. Remember to always keep medications well away from children.
– Blister Packs: We offer to package your week’s supply of medications into Blister Packs for various times of the day uniquely designed and carefully prepared by our team of pharmacist. Alternatively, you can purchase dosette containers and package them for yourself.
– Other hints: Some conditions, such as arthritis, can make it difficult to open containers. Some people find placing elastic bands around the bottle top makes opening a container easier for people with arthritis and other conditions. Talk to others to see what they do to help open medication vials
Should I take my medication with food?
– The medication is absorbed into the body better if there is food in the stomach (such as, calcium, nelfinavir, sertraline)
– The medication can cause stomach upset, and food can help prevent this (such as, dexamethasone, diclofenac & carbamazepine)
– The medication is needed to help the body process the meal (such as, pancreatic enzymes & lactase)
A number of other medications should also be taken with food. If you are not sure, check with your pharmacist. If your medication needs to be taken with food, take it with or just after a meal or a large snack. For some medications, it is enough to take it with a glass of milk. Check with your pharmacist for instructions specific to the medication you are taking.
Which medications should I take on an empty stomach?
A number of other medications should also be taken on an empty stomach. If you are not sure, check with your pharmacist. If your medication needs to be taken on an empty stomach, take it 2 hours before meals or 2 hours after your last food with a full glass of liquid (usually water). Some medications that should not be taken with food should also not be taken with milk. Check with the pharmacist to see if this is required for your medication.
How do I apply my ear drops?
If possible, get someone to put the drops in your ear for you.
- Warm the ear drops by holding the bottle in your hands for a few minutes. Do not heat the drops in hot water or the microwave.
- Always wash your hands with soap and water before administering ear drops.
- Ear drops must be kept clean. Do not let the dropper touch the ear or anything else that could have germs on it.
- Shake the bottle before using if there is a “Shake Well” label on the bottle. Lie on your side so that the ear you are treating is facing up.
- The ear canal must be straight so that the ear drops can reach the germs in your ear. The direction that you pull the top of the ear depends on the person’s age.
> For adults and children over 3 years of age, gently pull the top of the ear up and back.
> For children under 3 years of age, gently pull the top of the ear down and back.
- Hold the dropper above the ear. Place the prescribed number of drops into the ear. Do not put the dropper into the ear canal. It could injure the ear.
- Stay in the same position for 5 minutes after using the drops, specially if you have to put the drops in both ears. This will allow enough time for the ear drops to run down into the ear canal.
*This information is intended to provide general instructions for the use of eardrops. Instructions may vary for different products. If different instructions were given by your doctor or pharmacist, follow those instructions instead. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for specific information about your particular medication.
How do I apply my eye ointment?
– If you wear glasses or contact lenses, remove them.
– Hold the tube in your hand for a few minutes to warm the ointment and improve flow.
– When opening tube for the first time, squeeze out and throw away the first 0.25 cm (0.1 inch) of ointment as it may be too dry
– Wash your hands well with soap and water for at least 30 seconds to remove any bacteria that may be on your hands.
– Tilt your head back or lie down.
A) Applying ointment inside the eye:
- Keep both eyes open. Gently pull the lower eyelid of the affected eye down to form a pouch.
- Hold the tube almost horizontally. Bring it up to your eye from the side. This reduces the risk of accidentally hitting your eye with the tip of the tube.
- Hold the tip of the tube about 2.5 cm (1 inch) away from the eyelid. Do not touch the lids or lashes with the tip.
- Look upward by moving your eyes only (keep your head tilted back). Looking up moves the centre of the eyeball away from where the ointment is going. It will keep your eye from blinking hard when the ointment goes in.
- Place 0.6–1.25 cm (one-quarter to one-half inch) of ointment into the pouch of the lower eyelid. It is not necessary to place the ointment along the entire length of the pouch.
- Gently close the eye for 1–2 minutes and roll the eyeball in all directions. Blink 2–3 times to spread the instilled ointment across the ocular surface.
B) Applying ointment to the eyelid margins (outside the eye):
- Place 0.6–1.25 cm (one-quarter to one-half inch) of ointment onto a clean fingertip or cotton swab, and apply to the lid margins.
- Another option is to close the eye and wipe the ointment across the eyelashes.
– Use a clean tissue to remove excess ointment from around the eyelid.
– Eye ointments usually contain a preservative however, they become contaminated over time. Throw out any tubes that have been open for over a month.
– Remember: Your vision will be blurred for a few minutes after you put the ointment in. Do not drive or operate machinery until you can see clearly.
How do I apply my eye drops?
– Wash your hands well with soap and water for at least 30 seconds to remove any bacteria that may be on your hands.
– If the medication is a suspension, shake the bottle before using it. Ask your pharmacist if you’re not sure.
- Tilt your head back or lie down.
- Gently pull the lower eyelid of the affected eye down to form a pouch.
- Hold the bottle almost horizontally. Bring it up to your eye from the side. This reduces the risk of accidentally hitting your eye with the tip of the bottle. Do not touch the lid or lashes with the tip.
- Look upward by moving your eyes only (keep your head tilted back). Looking up moves the centre of the eyeball away from where the drop is going. It will keep your eye from blinking hard when the drop goes in.
- Put 1 drop into the pouch of the lower eyelid. Continue to hold your head back so the drop can fall as deeply as possible into the pouch.
- Look down for several seconds and slowly release the lower lid. Looking down allows the medication to reach the centre of the eye. This is especially important for infections of the cornea.
- Gently close the eyes. Do not squeeze the eyes shut—it may force the medication out. Keep eyes closed for at least one minute to ensure the medication is in contact with the eye for as long as possible.
- You can press gently on the side of the bridge of the nose with your thumb and index finger to help keep the medication from going down the tear duct. Not recommended after eye surgery.
- If more than 1 drop of the same medication is prescribed, wait 3–5 minutes between drops.
- If you are using more than 1 medication, wait 5–10 minutes before applying another medication.
– Eye drops usually contain a preservative however, they become contaminated over time. Throw out any tubes that have been open for over a month.along the bottle tip or inside cap.
– If you have problems with balance or dizziness, lie down or sit down in a very stable position before using your drops. This will reduce your risk of falling.
– If you have tremors (shaking) or arthritis, ask your pharmacist or eye-care professional about devices to help you use eye drops.
How do I apply my suppository?
- Wash your hands well with soap and water before and after.
- If the suppository feels too soft to insert, hold it under cool water (before removing the wrapper) to harden it.
- Remove the plastic or foil covering.
- If desired, use cool water or KY jelly (or another water-based lubricant) to lubricate the suppository tip and the rectum.
- Lie on your side with the bottom leg straight and the upper leg bent up towards your chest.
- Relax the butock just before inserting and gently push the suppository high into the rectum so that it will not slip out, pointed end first.
- Close your legs and remain lying down while holding your buttocks together to allow it to dissolve for approximately 5 minutes.
– If the medication is for constipation, you should feel the urge for a bowel movement within about 15 to 60 minutes.
– If not, a suppository should be used at bedtime so that the medication is thoroughly absorbed. There may be some leakage in the morning.
*This information is intended to provide general instructions for the use of a suppository. Instructions may vary for different products. If different instructions were given by your doctor or pharmacist, follow those instructions instead. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for specific information about your particular medication.
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