Tips for Taking Your Medications and Why it’s Important to Adhere to Your Medication Regimen
February 12, 2021
When patients don’t take their medications as directed, they miss out on the benefits of these medications and put themselves at risk of their condition worsening. Taking medications as directed by your physician, also called patient adherence, is important for controlling the symptoms of chronic conditions and maintaining long-term health.
There are many reasons why patients may not adhere to their treatment plan, but there are also helpful actions patients can take to make following their medication regimen easier.
Follow a Medication Routine
It can be easy to forget to take your medication. Forming a habit when it comes to your medication schedule may help. Ways you can help form a habit when it comes to taking your medication include:
- Taking your medication at the same time each day. Consider setting an alarm on your phone to help you remember.
- Taking your medication when you do other daily activities, like eating breakfast or brushing your teeth.
- Using a habit-tracker app to help you keep track of when you have taken your medications.
Learn About Your Medications
The more patients know about their medications, the more likely they are to take them as directed. If you have a question about your prescription, you can ask your pharmacist. Some questions you’ll want to ask about your medication include:
- What does the medication do?
- Should you take the medication with food?
- What side effects are associated with the medication?
- What do you do if you miss a dose?
- What time of day should you take your medication?
Patients who experience unwanted side effects caused by their medication should talk to their doctor. Never stop taking a medication before speaking with your doctor.
Presort Your Medications
If you take multiple medications, consider using a pill organizer or a medication presorting service, to sort your medications. If you use a pillbox, pick one day of the week to sort out your medications. Additionally, there are numerous services that presort and package your medications into clearly labeled pouches. Each pouch is labeled with the day and time you should take your medication. Presorting your medications can help save you time and the hassle associated with organizing your pills every day.
Talk to Your Pharmacist if You Need Help Taking Your Medications
If you need help managing your medication regimen, talk to your pharmacist. Your pharmacist is an important part of your healthcare team who can help you learn about your medication and adhere to your treatment.