How hard could it be to manage your medication? You fill the prescription, read the instructions, and place the bottles in your medicine cabinet.
Sure, that part is child’s play, but remembering to take those pills, following the instructions every day, and keeping an eye out for adverse interactions is difficult.
As personal care physicians, we’ve realized there are three types of patients:
If you’re the third person, pat yourself on the back, and move along to one of our other blog posts. Like this one on balancing your hormones naturally.
But, if you’re here, it’s likely you fall into the first or second category. Don’t worry — most people do!
In fact, we aren’t perfect either. Yet, we do have a few tips when it comes to organizing and managing your medication, vitamins, and supplements.
Use a Pill Organizer, Like this One
Hear us out. We’re big fans of the old lady pillbox. Pillboxes help you take medication every day, even when you’re rushing out the door or on vacation in the Galapagos islands.
Lucky for you, we’ve found a stylish, discrete, and tech-savvy pillbox.
The Sagely Smart Weekly Pill Organizer has seven containers which sit on a magnetic tray. The dispensers are large enough to hold fish oil or vitamin D supplements. It’s easy to open, ‘pleasing to the eye,’ and has AM/PM dispensers. Each container is detachable from the tray, so you can tuck it in your purse or pocket.
You can also download the free reminder app. You type in your medications, set a reminder, and a notification pops up on your phone when it’s time to take your pills. No excuses, right?
Create a Schedule and Reward Yourself for Sticking to It
Speaking of reminders — the instructions wrapped around the bottle aren’t suggestions.
Take it from us. We write prescriptions for natural progesterone frequently and advise our patients to take it at bedtime. But, often, the patient pops the pill in the morning (when they’re more likely to remember).
While the intention is admirable, the execution leaves them feeling sleepy all day long.
Timing is important. Sit down with your medication and create a schedule based on the instructions. Set reminders or alarms on your phone (for every day), so you don’t forget.
Or try setting some “not until” parameters. For example, you’re not allowed to brush your teeth until you take your statin drug. Choose a method (or tasty reward) that’ll work best for you!
Fill All Your Prescriptions at One Pharmacy
If you’re taking several prescriptions, we understand the need to hunt down savings. But, there are risks involved when you fill one prescription at CVS and another at Kroger.
When you go to one location, the pharmacist is aware of all the medications you take. He or she can inform you about potential drug interactions. If you fill your prescriptions at different pharmacies, it may be overlooked.
They’ll also review the instructions with you so you can stick to that schedule we talked about earlier.
Be Your Best Advocate and Make Your List
Of course, your doctors and pharmacists all have your best interest at heart. But you know your body better, and need to play an active role in your healthcare.
Create a list of all the medications you take. The record will speak for you in case you can’t. Plus, it can be hard to remember everything!
WebMD has a drug interaction tracker. You enter the names of all your medications, vitamins, and supplements. It will tell you if there’s any overlap, and you can discuss with your doctor whether any interactions are a significant concern or not.
These are a few best practices to manage your medication, supplements, and vitamins.
Use a pillbox to get organized and keep your medicine at top-of-mind. Take time to create a list of your medication, the instructions, and if there are any potential drug interactions. Then, create a schedule and stick to it!
Did we miss a tip? Share how you manage your medication below!