A visit to the pharmacy to pick up a senior loved one’s medications is an excellent opportunity to ask questions. Your loved one’s pharmacist can help you understand the potential side effects of the medication and offer advice or alternative solutions if your loved one has problems like forgetting to take medication or having difficulty swallowing capsules. Next time you head to the pharmacy, ask the following questions, and let the pharmacist know if your loved one is taking any new medications or supplements.
1. Why Is This Medication Prescribed?
You should know the names and purposes of all medications your loved one is taking, especially since many seniors are prescribed medications by multiple physicians and specialists. This will help you monitor things like efficacy and keep an eye out for potential interactions.
2. How Long Will the Medicine Take to Resolve Symptoms?
The pharmacist can give you an idea of how long it will be before your loved one begins to see relief from symptoms. This general guideline will also help you determine whether the medicine is working as it’s supposed to or if your loved one needs a different prescription.
Helping a loved one with medication management can be a challenging task, especially if he or she is living with cognitive decline due to Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia. There are a variety of reasons to consider professional dementia care. Altamonte Springs dementia caregivers are available 24/7 to help seniors maintain better cognitive health, and they can also assist with various tasks like medication reminders, transportation to medical appointments, and nutritious meal preparation.
3. Can the Medication Be Taken with Others?
It’s always important to understand if your loved one’s medications may cause a potentially dangerous drug interaction. The pharmacist can let you know if your loved one should avoid certain over-the-counter medications, prescriptions, or even supplements that may cause an interaction.
Seniors who take one or more medications sometimes need to be reminded when and how to take them. In Windermere, home care providers can benefit aging adults in a variety of ways. From cooking nutritious meals to offering timely medication reminders, the dedicated caregivers at Home Care Assistance are available to help your elderly loved one 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
4. Should the Medication Be Taken with Food?
Some medications can be harsh and cause unpleasant side effects if they’re taken without food, while others need to be taken on an empty stomach. Some foods, such as grapefruit, should also be avoided with certain medications, as they prevent the medications from working.
5. Can the Medication Be Crushed or Dissolved?
Many seniors have difficulty swallowing pills and capsules. The pharmacist will let you know if your loved one’s medications can be dissolved in a drink to make them easier to take.
6. What Are the Potential Side Effects?
The pharmacist can let you know what side effects you should watch for and what to do if your loved one experiences a serious reaction. Understanding the side effects of your loved one’s medication is also important for safety, as some medications cause dizziness or drowsiness that can increase the risk of a fall or injury.
A trained home caregiver can monitor your loved one closely for any signs of medication side effects. If you’re the primary caregiver for a senior family member and are looking for professional elder care, Home Care Assistance should be your top choice. Our dedicated and compassionate caregivers are committed to helping older adults address their health issues and enjoy a higher quality of life in the golden years. If you need compassionate professional home care for your loved one, call one of our friendly Care Managers today at (407) 232-7155.