Medicine can be an amazing thing. It often adds years to life and improves comfort. However, when you take medicine for one symptom or illness, and then add a pill for something else — and another doctor adds additional treatments, it can eventually turn into something entirely overwhelming. This can become a big problem for older adults who may struggle to remember when they have taken all their pills or have trouble keeping track of their different prescriptions.
Think about this — according to a recent Forbes article, the average senior aged 65 and older takes around 27 prescriptions each year! How do you decide when you have too many medications to handle, and what can you do to make the process easier? Discover a few tips to make this process a bit easier.
- Talk to Your Primary Care Physician – Make sure the PCP knows exactly what medications you or your loved one are taking. It could be that specialists have prescribed different medications over the years, and some could be eliminated or streamlined. The first step should always be to discuss the situation with the doctor.
- Set Up a Pill-Minder – Many pill boxes and organizers are available that can make it easier to keep track of pills. With these options, you can track your loved one’s daily medications and make sure they don’t miss a dose.
- Consider Technology – Another option is to use alarms and notifications on a cellphone or tablet. If your mom or dad is tech-savvy, they may be able to choose one for themselves. Other options involve the caretaker setting it up with no major technology use involved. E-pill offers two options, which serve as both an alarm and a pill box. The 31-day pill box is a good choice for many older adults who just need a little assistance, while the MedSmart box is a locked automatic medicine dispenser. This choice can be invaluable for those with Alzheimer’s or dementia.
- In-Home Care – Having someone come by the house once or twice a day just to distribute medication could be an option in some cases. If your mom or dad is independent, but merely gets a bit overwhelmed by the pills, doing this can give you both some peace of mind.
- Assisted Living – While changing someone’s entire living arrangement is not something to be taken lightly, assisted living is a wonderful choice for many seniors. In most cases, medication is handled by highly trained nurses who will distribute it when needed. You will not need to worry; it will be given exactly when it is needed. This can assure that no dose is missed, and nothing is given when it isn’t required.
While you have many things to think about when considering medication, this is not something you have to handle alone. If you are struggling with this, reach out to us at CareChoice, LLC. We have many suggestions and tools that can help you and your family cope with the difficulties that come with aging. Give us a call at (404) 402-1499 or contact us online today. We are always here for you.