Whether there are medications your dad currently takes or his doctor wants to add a new one, you need to ask questions. It’s important to know everything you can about the medication for his safety and your peace of mind. Here are five questions you need to ask.
Why is He Taking It?
Find out why the doctor wants him to take the medication. If your dad has been down and the doctor prescribes an antidepressant, there may be other options he could try first. He might find that a daily walk and participation in a Yoga class improves his mood better than a prescription.
Are There More Affordable Generics?
According to the AARP, the cost of common prescription medications for seniors increased by almost 16 percent in 2015. Many seniors struggle to keep up with the price increases and opt to skip taking medications instead.
If your dad is struggling with his prescription costs, ask his doctor if there are rebates or generic medications that can save him money. If that doesn’t get the cost down enough, ask for help affording medications. It’s better to ask than have him stop taking them.
Does the Benefit Outweigh the Risk?
Some medications have frightening side effects. You’ve probably seen news reports on popular blood pressure medications getting recalled by the FDA. These medications have small amounts of carcinogens that may cause certain kinds of cancer.
You have to sit down and ask the doctor if the benefits are worth the risks. If the risk of illness or death is great, talk about other options. Ask what happens if he doesn’t take any medication and tries another option like diet and exercise instead.
What Time of Day is Best for Taking It?
Some medications have side effects like dizziness that put your dad at risk of a fall. For these medications, it’s recommended that seniors take them right before bed. Find out from his doctor if there is a time of day that’s ideal.
Are There Foods, Supplements, and Drinks He Should Avoid on This Medication?
If your dad is on a blood pressure medication, he may have been told not to drink grapefruit juice. With some medications, grapefruit increases the level of medication in the blood. If he likes licorice, he shouldn’t eat it when he takes digoxin for heart disease. Caffeine in chocolate, tea, and coffee may interact with some sleep medications. Those are just a few examples.
Your dad may have a hard time remembering to get refills or to take his medications. Hire senior care services to help him with medication reminders and errands. Caregivers can call to order refills and drive him to the pharmacy to pick them up. Call a senior care agency to hire caregivers for your dad.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering Senior Care in Slaton TX, please contact the caring staff at Best In-Home Care (806) 412-0723.