Medication Safety Tips and Reminders

During the summer months, our attention often turns to safety—pool safety, sun safety, firework safety, etc. Along those lines, I decided that we should take a look at some medication safety pointers

1. Never Take Medication That is Prescribed For Someone Else

You should also never give medication that is prescribed for you to someone else. Medications are prescribed specifically for each person, and the type and dose is based on your personal health needs. Your spouse’s, friend’s, or other relative’s medicines are prescribed specifically for them. Taking non-prescription medication alone or in conjunction with other prescription medications may cause severe side effects or be deadly. Be stingy with your medications.

2. Never keep expired or discontinued medications

Find a safe way to dispose of your medications that have expired or been discontinued. Contact your physician or pharmacist for help in doing this.

3. Never put different kinds of medications in the same container.

4. Never take medications that are not clearly marked.

5. Consult with your physician or pharmacist if you have questions about your medications.

It is good practice to know why you are taking each medication, what dosage has been prescribed for you, when you should take it, and what some of the common side effects are.

6. Don’t stop taking your medication because you feel better.

You probably feel better because you are taking the medication. If you stop it without consulting your physician you may start to feel worse.

7. Don’t stop taking your medication because you feel worse.

Every medication can have side effects. Each medication may affect each individual differently. If you are experiencing mild side effects they may go away as your body adjusts to a new medication. Call your physician to let him know what you are experiencing and they will advise you on how to proceed. If you are experiencing severe side effects call your physician immediately.

8. Keep all medication away from children.

Medications should be kept in a locked cabinet or at least at a level that is too high for children to reach regardless if they have child-proof caps or not.

9. Read the medication labels each time you take your medicine.

A medication’s label is a safety feature that can help prevent medication errors.

10. Use a pill reminder

These can be purchased at your local pharmacy and are relatively inexpensive. If your medication schedule is confusing for you a family member or trusted friend can help you to fill your pill reminder each week.

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