Why you should Talk to your Pharmacist First

As we get older it is important to be more careful with taking medications, prescribed or over the counter, because the normal changes that come with age can also change your reaction to certain medications.  The interactions between medications you take can also change.

The more knowledgeable you are about the possible adverse effects of the medications you take on your body, the better action you can take.  The very best place to start gaining this knowledge would be at your pharmacy.  You can ask your pharmacist.

Questions you should ask:

1. What is the supposed action of the medication?

Medications have different functions; pain medication is taken to relieve pain, antibiotics are given to cure certain illnesses, and then others are prescribed to inhibit certain reactions your body have towards your environment, like hay fever, etc.

2. How should the medication be taken?

Medication can be taken with food or on an empty stomach.  It can be best to take them early in the morning or just before going to bed.  In the case of certain medications, for instance, antibiotics, the medication should be taken strictly how it is prescribed, every 6 hours or every 8 hours.

3. Can drug-food interactions be expected?

Certain foods can slow the absorption of certain drugs and even totally render them ineffective.  In the same way, certain medicines can influence the way your body absorbs nutrients.

4. Can Alcohol-drug interactions happen with this medication?

Taking alcohol while taking some medicines, for instance, pain medication can cause drowsiness or tiredness.  There should be a note on medication if this is the case.  Alcohol can also hinder the correct absorption of some medications.

5. How long will it take the medication to have an effect?

You can monitor your reaction to the drug if you know what it should do and when it should start doing what it is supposed to do.

Asking these questions can help you become more knowledgeable about medication and the possible side effects and also the positive effects it should have.

Choosing a pharmacist should be taken as seriously as choosing your doctor.  Find someone you feel comfortable with when sharing your health history with.  A pharmacist you can trust.  A pharmacist that will always give you the correct advice about any medication you are taking or should start taking.  A pharmacist that is as serious about your health and well-being, as you, yourself.

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