Most seniors take at least one or two prescription medications to treat everything from high blood pressure to cholesterol and heartburn to headaches. Unfortunately, juggling all these medications can be confusing for both caregivers and patients, especially if they’re experiencing memory lapses. Below are a few tips to avoid overmedicating seniors or accidentally skipping doses.
A Guide to Medication Management for Seniors
1. Set an Alarm
Setting an alarm reminder is the easiest way to remind seniors to take their medication. However, this can be complex if they take several pills that need to be taken at different times of day. Many caregivers opt to invest in a smart home system that makes it easy to set multiple recurring reminders.
2. Keep All Medications Together
Keeping medications in different locations makes it easier for seniors to forget, even if you have an alarm set. To simplify the process, gather all their prescription medication, over-the-counter medicines, and vitamins in one place. This ensures your family member knows where their pills are when they need them.
3. Use a Dispenser
At some point, most seniors experience momentary memory lapses, which are normally harmless. However, forgetting that they’ve already taken their medication can have serious consequences, so purchase a dispenser for them. Boxes that count out the day’s pills will help your loved ones avoid an accidental overdose.
4. Keep a List of Medications
Doctors don’t always check with one another before prescribing new drugs, which can lead to potentially dangerous interactions. To ensure your loved one’s health care team has all the information they need, write a list of all the medications they're taking, including the dosages, and bring it to every doctor’s appointment. Just remember to update the list every time your loved one starts taking a new drug.
For over 20 years, the caregivers at Polish Helping Hands have provided support and compassionate service to seniors and their families throughout Connecticut’s Farmington, Bristol, New Britain, Burlington, and Newington. They take pride in tailoring their services to your loved one’s needs, and finding caregivers who match their clients’ personalities. Visit their website for an overview of their elder care services or call (860) 404-0499 to discuss your loved one’s needs with a member of their team.