Three Main Reasons Seniors with Heart Problems Fail to Adhere to their Medications
Medications can only do much good when they leave the bottle. But according to the American Heart Association, around 12% of people do not take their medication after getting a prescription. Others do not really fill their prescriptions at all. And a lot of more stop getting refills. Research shows that years after elderly people were prescribed statin medications to lower cholesterol, just 26% of them still take them.
Many patients do not follow the instructions of his physician and often take less than the recommendation or miss a dose. According to the American Heart Association, the main issue when treating an illness these days is a patient’s failure to taker prescriptions right away. Over the years, a lot of patients put their heart and lives at risk as they do not take their medications. But the majority of patients who get encouragement and a bit of help can do what they have to in order to stay healthy. Below are some reasons why patients do not adhere to their heart prescriptions.
Tough Choices for People with Lower Income
For seniors, the high costs of medicines interfere with adherence. While a lot of older adults today can access some prescription drug benefits trough Medicare, seniors with low income are likely to take lower doses than needed or skip pills due to their medication’s cost.
Getting Simple Help
Unlike antidepressants, pain relievers and other kinds of medication, cholesterol and blood pressure drugs do not have to make a person feel better. These latter conditions are silent conditions and because patients don’t see the benefits, many of them usually lose their motivation to continue to take the pills.
Luckily, patients can now get the right feedback from their blood pressure medication use by using a home blood pressure monitor. Checking the blood pressure on a daily basis allows a patient to tell exactly how well his medication is working. Also patients who have high cholesterol must have their levels checked by their physician regularly.
Even if cost is not a problem, staying motivated to take medications is just half of the battle. People who take their medications seriously can also make mistakes. Some of them may take their drugs at the wrong time of the day, take the incorrect number of medications or take their drugs on an empty stomach rather than with a meal or vise versa. Those who take multiple medications are prone to slip-ups. According to the American Heart Association, almost 60% of people who take at least five medications take them improperly.
In case you have a problem with monitoring your medications, a little preparation can help you. Begin the job in your physician’s office. Ensure that your physician explains clearly how each medication must be taken and whether it will interact with other pills you are taking. Do not hesitate to ask questions to your healthcare provider.
Additionally, your physician may also learn things from you. Make sure you mention all medications you are taking that include over the counter medications and herbs. Consider putting samples of your medications in a bag and bring them to your physician’s office so you can review these pills together. A lot of medications prescribed for heart protection may interact with other drugs in harmful ways. For example, cholesterol-lowering statin drugs can interact with some antifungal medicines, antibiotics, heartburn drugs and blood thinners. Let your physician and pharmacy know what you are taking.
Additionally, in case you do not understand the reason you are taking a certain medication, make sure you talk with your physician. Consider asking him for simple dosage instructions. Try to be honest if you think that a drug is not helpful so that you both can agree what you have to take. Affinity Caretaker, Inc., a provider of non-medical home care in Seven Mile Road Livonia MI suggests to bring up cultural believes on medications that your doctor may not know about. When you will be taking a medication for a long time, ask for three months’ worth of medicine to refill your medicine before you run out of it.