Medication Safety Tips for Older Adults

Whether you’re settling into your sixties or heading into your ninth decade, be careful when taking prescription and over-the-counter medicines, herbal preparations, and supplements. And if you’re caring for older loved ones, help them stay safe, too. Why the special concern? The older you get, the more likely you are to use additional medicines, which can increase the chance of harmful drug effects, including interactions. And, as you age, physical changes can affect the way medicines are handled by your body, leading to potential complications. For instance, your liver and kidneys may not work as well, which affects how a drug breaks down and leaves your body.  See below for four safety tips:

1. Take Medicine as Prescribed—with Input from Your Health Care Provider

2. Keep a Medication List

3. Be Aware of Potential Drug Interactions and Side Effects

4. Review Medications with Your Health Care Provider                                                                     

See also: Medication Management for Older Adults.