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How to deal with multiple meds

Having multiple different diagnoses throws up many challenges, one of which is multiple medications. Each condition may need to be treated separately, leaving you feeling like a walking pharmacy! Having been in this situation for many years now, I'd like to share some of the tips I use to cope and make the best out of it.

1. Make sure you really do need each tablet!
I have found myself a couple of times over the years looking at my pill box thinking "I don't even know what half of these do!". If that be the case, don't be afraid to check with your doctor. Sometimes a medication will linger on your repeat long after you have been switched to another or no longer need it. Taking unnecessary tablets increases the risk of side effects and nasty long term affects on the body so make sure your doc can tell you why you need each one. Reviewing your prescription regularly is essential when you have multiple medications.

2. Watch out for contraindications!
Sometimes you will be prescribed medications by many different medical departments and not all doctors are diligent enough in checking what medications you already take before prescribing. This could put you at risk of bad side effects caused by contraindicated meds. It's a situation I've been in myself more than once and I actually ended up quite unwell at one point before it was pointed out to me that I shouldn't actually take some of those meds together. The best person to check this is a pharmacist. They will be able to tell you if all of your meds are safe to be taken together and if not, speak to your GP asap! 

3. Find what's comfortable.
If a tablet has no specific time that you need to take it, do what's most comfortable for you. I take all of my main meds at night because I find my mornings too busy and I forget, and also that the side effects (drowsiness and nausea mainly) impact upon my days too much. I checked with my doctor and we agreed that this is the best strategy for me. Maybe your tablets keep you awake? Take them in the morning. Maybe they cause nausea? Take them after lunch or your evening meal. Obviously there are exceptions, some meds must be taken at certain times and you can't mess with that. However, if you can, find what works best for you.

4. Laugh at it!
Most importantly of all, have a laugh and don't let it get you down! The daily routine of popping pills can be a total drag but try to see the funny side! I always tell my wife that I rattle when I walk and she always jokes that my side of the bed is like my own personal pharmacy. I smile about it if I can and take the piss out of it, always makes me feel better!

Please feel free to comment and check out some of my other posts. Hope this has been helpful!

Jo xx

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