When you get older, your body becomes weaker and there will be more health problems needed to be treated on a regular basis. The increasing use of medicines and significant body chances caused by age result in several medicine problems among most of the elderly. What follows below is an attempt to provide some informations on how to prevent and reduce medicine problems in old people.
- Taking lower doses of medicines
When your body has a lot of changes due to aging process, it will become more sensitive to the majority of medicines. That’s why you have to take lower doses compared to the young. Another reason for lower doses is the reduced kidney function, which leads to a remarkable reduction in how well your body handles medicines.
In case you are taking a certain medicine for the first time, it’s more important to take it at lower doses. If you want to increase the amount of medicine, ask your doctor carefully for a gradual increase.
- Talk to your doctor about your medical issues
Don’t hesitate to talk to your doctor about your health concerns, what medicines, supplements, vitamins, and herbals you are taking. They will help you to decide whether you can take different medical products at the same time or not and how much you should take for each medicine.
- Having kidney function tested
Before taking a type of medicine for a long time, you had better get your kidney function tested so that the doctor is able to decide which medicine if suitable for you, and how much you should take on a daily basis. This step may take time, however, it’s one of the best way to help prevent medicine problems.
- Avoiding some medicines
As you get older, you are more likely to face serious side effects of some certain types of medicine. Ask your doctor whether you can stop or have safer options. As your kidney function is not as good as before, you should be cautious to protect yourself from complicated medicine problems.
- Learn about medicine
If you have a good understanding about the possible problems when taking a certain medicine, such as its symptoms and risk factors, how to reduce them, ect, you will be less nervous when you actually face it.
To get those information, you can ask your doctors and pharmacist, or you can read on the medicine label or packaging, on the warning stickers applied by the pharmacist, and in the consumer medicine information (CMI) leaflet.
- Inform your doctor if you face medicine problems
Spend time writing a health diary every day to keep track of all side effects of the medicine you are taking. If there are symptoms that make you really uncomfortable or take for several hours, immediately inform your doctor about that.