Medication safety is a critical topic for anyone taking medications, both prescribed and over the counter. Taking the wrong dose or using an incorrect medication can have serious health consequences. It is important to understand the important points of medication safety so that you can keep yourself and your family safe.
Importance of Knowing Your Medications
One of the most important things that you can do for medication safety is to know the name of each of the medications that you are taking. Make a list with the name, dose, and time of day that you take each medication. You can also include any over-the-counter medications and herbal supplements that you may be taking. Many pharmacies keep this information on your computers, but it is good to have a copy at home as well.
Discuss Your Medications with Your Doctor
Before you add any new medications, discuss them with your doctor. With many over-the-counter medications, you may not think it is necessary; however, interactions can occur when you least expect it. Make sure that your doctor knows about all of the medications you are taking as well as any supplements you may have recently started to use.
Be Wary of Online Medicine Shopping
Recently, online shopping has become a popular way to purchase medications. You should be aware, though, that some online sites may be selling counterfeit medications that are not effective and may be unsafe. Never purchase medications online without first talking to your doctor or pharmacist.
Store Medication Properly
It is important to store medications safely and properly. Keep them in a cool, dry place and away from young children. Some medications need to be kept in the refrigerator, so be sure to read the instructions on the label.
Pay Attention to Side Effects
When you start any new medication, be sure to understand what side effects you may experience. Read the label for common side effects and consult with your doctor or pharmacist if you are concerned about anything.
Throw Out Expired Medications
Be sure to throw away any medications when they have expired. Expired medications may be less effective and could cause other issues.
Medication safety is an important part of maintaining your health, and it is important to understand the risks involved with taking medications, especially when providing medication to your elderly parents, children or other family members. Understanding proper medication safety can help protect you and those that you love.
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