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Senior Health: What to Ask the Pharmacist

Medication management can be a complicated part of an hourly or live-in home care responsibilities. This is especially true after a new diagnosis that may require a change in your loved one’s current medication schedule. Fortunately, most medication mishaps can be prevented by simply asking your pharmacist these important questions.

Why is this medication prescribed?
It is important to understand exactly which health conditions a medication is prescribed to treat so that you can be alert for signs the issue is improving. Additionally, this knowledge will help you ensure your loved one stops taking the medication if it becomes no longer necessary.

How will my loved one feel on this medication?
Side effects can vary from one patient to another. However, your pharmacist will be familiar with the effects that occur most often. Simply knowing that your loved one may be tired or experience mood changes can help you to better plan for his or her care.

Is there a way to make the medicine easier to ingest?
At Albuquerque Home Care Assistance, we find seniors often balk at the prospect of taking horse pills, especially if they have difficulty swallowing. If the medicine can be crushed, cut in half, or mixed with food, you may find it easier to encourage your loved one to stick to their medication routine.

What happens if a dose is skipped or too much is taken?

Medication mix-ups can happen even with the best of care. While some medications can be skipped or taken in excess with no consequences, others could require a visit to the hospital. Prevent an emergency situation by knowing beforehand what to do should one occur.

Is a senior-friendly lid available?
Many senior adults struggle with a loss of strength and dexterity that can make opening childproof lids impossible. For this reason, pharmacies often stock easy-open lids with special grips specifically for seniors so they can enjoy greater independence.

How can I prevent potential problems from occurring?
Falls, car accidents, and overdoses are just a few of the potential risks carried with certain medications. Talk to your pharmacist about the most common problems encountered by patients taking a medication so that you can implement preventative strategies. For example, arranging for transportation services can be an excellent way to prevent a senior from driving while on a medication that may impair their abilities.

If your loved one needs help managing his or her prescriptions, including prescription pick-up and medication reminders, reach out to Home Care Assistance of Albuquerque. Along with these activities, our live-in and hourly Albuquerque caregivers can prepare meals, provide transportation, offer mobility support, and much more. Call 505-798-0800 to speak with a friendly Care Manager and schedule a free no-obligation consultation.