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Managing Medications for a Loved One: Top Tips for Caregivers

By: BrightStar Care of Bedford

It is a natural occurrence in life that as we age, our body goes through a series of changes. These changes not only affect the way we live life but also affect how our bodies function. One of the things that change as we age is how our body responds to certain medications. An important aspect of senior care is managing your senior loved one's medicines and staying on top of the monitoring process while observing how their bodies react to these medications. This is extremely crucial especially if your loved ones are taking multiple prescriptions at the same time or are experiencing abrupt physiological changes.

Over the next few paragraphs, we will share some of the top tips we have learned as professional caregivers at BrightStar Care to help you on your journey with your loved ones. 

5 Suggestions for Managing Medications Like a Pro

1. Maintain a Log

Keeping track of all the medicine your loved ones have taken is the first step toward good medication management. This log should include the following information:

  • The medicine’s brand and chemical name
  • What the medication looks like
  • The date they started taking the medication
  • The expiration date of the medication
  • What the medicine is for
  • The strength of the medication (typically milligrams)
  • The dosage to be taken and when
  • How the dosage should be taken (IE: with food, before bed)
  • Possible side effects of the medication
  • Storage instructions
  • Whether or not refills are needed
  • The doctor that prescribed the medication
  • The pharmacy where the prescription is filled

At the same time, keeping track of your loved one's health might be useful. Changes in their overall behavior, weight, hunger, sleep habits, or mood are all possible indicators of changing health conditions or contraindications. Keeping a medicine log may help medical practitioners to better understand how the medicines are affecting your loved one and how to manage care better.

2. Maintain Communication With Physicians

Share your records with the doctors of your loved one so they may examine them. They'll be the ones to determine whether or not the dosages need any changes, as well as any potential pharmaceutical interactions that could be a hazard. 


3. Stick to One Pharmacy 

When taking medicines, it's beneficial to use a single pharmacy if possible. As a result, the pharmacist will be able to better keep track of your loved ones' medications and will serve as the second line of defense in detecting negative drug interactions. 


4. Utilize Medication Management Aids

There are a variety of methods that senior and family members may use to guarantee that their loved ones take their medications as prescribed. Investing in a pillbox or a pill dispenser is an easy and popular approach for individuals. Both may be created to fulfill the most basic or complex medication management requirements. Alternatively, setting an alarm clock or arranging a phone call with your elderly loved one is a great way to remind them.


5. Designate a Leader

The objective of this leader is to act as a single point of contact for your loved one, assisting them in navigating the healthcare system and any additional senior care. They will be in command of scheduling and attending necessary medical appointments, keeping prescription or other health-related records, and monitoring their loved one's health in collaboration with medical specialists.

Looking for further medication management advice or a helping hand? BrightStar Care of Bedford can assist you. Contact us online or by phone at 603-637-4646.