Most seniors today take a sizeable amount of daily prescription medications. Medication problems are widespread. According to the Department of Health and Human Services: 55 percent of the elderly are “non-compliant” with their prescription drugs orders, meaning they don’t take the medication according to the doctor’s orders
Approximately 200,000 older adults are hospitalized annually due to adverse drug reactions.
Some common reasons why seniors don’t take their medications as prescribed are:
- Vision Problems
For elders who have vision problems, not being able to read small print on labels or distinguish between pills can lead to potentially dangerous misuse.
- Memory Loss
Elders who suffer from dementia or Alzheimer’s disease may simply forget to take their medications, causing them to skip doses. The opposite is also true: if they can’t remember whether they took their medication, they might take it again, causing overdose.
Other common forms of drug treatment noncompliance found in the elderly are: overuse and abuse and alteration of schedules and doses.
Taking more than the prescribed dose of prescription medications, or combining them with alcohol or other drugs, can have deadly consequences. An accidental overdose leading to death can occur.
805Aging can assist with reminder phone calls, as medication trays, ordering prescriptions, monitoring for adverse side effects. These are some of the ways in which we provide medication management and oversight.
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