Do your elderly parents manage their own medications? Many seniors are fully capable of managing proper dosage and timing. However, most seniors working with our agency, Home Care Partners, need additional supervision and reminders on what pills are to be taken, and when. The reality of seniors and medication is that proper dosage and timing can be very confusing. Morning pills differ from evening pills. In many cases there may be greater than ten unique pills to be ingested every day.

I have witnessed many seniors who buy into these common myths about medication usage:

• If one drug makes me feel good, a larger dose will make me feel better.
• If one drug does not work, I should take two or three.
• If I can buy it over the counter, it must be safe. Which may result in mixing prescribed meds with over-the-counter.
• If my physician has not stopped the medication, I can still use it. (There may be multiple leftover containers with old meds.)
• If it helped my friend, it will help me. These casual conversations can result in too many pills.
• If my friend has some extra medication that I have been taking, I can use it too.

– John D. Miller is the owner of Home Care Partners, LLC, a Massachusetts business providing private duty, personalized in-home assistance and companion care services to those needing help in daily activities and household functions. He can be reached at: (781) 378-2164; email: jdmiller@homecarepartners.biz ; or online at: www.homecarepartnersma.com

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