Well I must admit that this is rather a different from what I normally post on a Sunday (usually you all get a weekly dose of YouTube) but this week I thought that this health post would be extremely informative and beneficial to most of you. Although World Health Day was last month, I thought that I’d continue to raise awareness through a post on medication safety and tips on what to ask your doctor when you next pay a visit. It has been reported that there are around 700,000 emergency visits each year that come from incorrect medication use, and of course, the first step to preventing this would be to ask questions to your doctor. Simple questions like: how much and how often? What is the duration I should be taking this medication for? Are there side effects? What are the recalls on this medication, could sincerely reduce the likelihood of having an emergency. I know that a lot of people refrain from asking these sort of questions because they feel as though they are wasting their doctor’s time, but in my world there is no such thing as a silly question so you should never ever feel as though you shouldn’t ask. Now I must disclose that I am not ‘medical expert’ nor am I GP or in a medical profession, but I am merely just promoting general awareness.
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Here are some do’s and don’t when it comes to medication:
DOS: Take medication as exactly prescribed- create lists, set alarms on your phone, and be aware of any potential side effects. Remember to follow any special restrictions- check out certain foods, wear a tag, check out whether you need to avoid the sun or not. Know how and where to store your medication- does it need to be refrigerated? Does it need to be stored in a cool dry place? Store them out of the reach of pets and children.
DON’TS: Never take anyone else’s medication- this is extremely dangerous and never should be done. Don’t drink in excess only in moderation (or none at all)- not only can alcohol make some medications not work but mixing can also be lethal. Don’t run out of medication- doing so can cause you to miss a dose which can weaken its effectiveness. Don’t keep old expired medications- but make sure you dispose of them safely. Do not stop taking your medication due to expense- reach out to health care programmes.
Asking and providing general health and information to your doctor could considerably improve your care as it can help to build trust up the doctor and patient relationship, which can then lead onto better results and satisfaction (it’s almost like a team effort between yourself and your doctor). Not only can asking questions help to sort out one problem, but it can also answer many more like general well being. When ever I go to the doctor/nurse I always like them to check out my blood pressure just in case there any abnormalities. I also like to tell my doctor any other problems that I am having just in case they are all linked to one another- the more information your give the easier it is for your doctor to give a diagnosis. You can also change your diet and lifestyle off from your doctor’s feedback so take the opportunity whilst you can (because it usually takes forever to get another appointment here in the UK). So here are some general questions to ask your doctor when you next pay a visit:
♥ Am I overweight/underweight?
♥ Is my blood pressure/BMI/Cholesterol normal?
♥ Could this be due to family genetics?
♥ What is this test for? When will I get the results? What are the alternatives?
♥ Why do I need this treatment? What happens if it doesn’t work?
♥ Are there any side effects? I have X allergy, does this medication have this in it?
♥ Will this medicine interact with medicines that I am already taking ie: contraceptive pill?
♥ How many times have you done this procedure? What are the complications?
What questions/tips do you recommend?
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