Patients and their medications
If you take multiple medications, it may be complicated to manage them. In addition, you may experience symptoms and not know if these are side effects and which medication could be contributing to this.
It might be difficult to tell if the problem is due to your medication or the condition that you may be suffering with. Therefore, knowing where to find information regarding your medication can help you to understand how to manage your medications and where to seek support.
Tips to manage your medicines
It is crucial to take medications properly, as prescribed, but doing so can be more challenging if you take a variety of medications the following hints may be useful.
- Keep a record of medications you take.
- always read the leaflet that comes with the medicine.
- retain the packaging until you are done taking your medication.
- Verify with your GP or pharmacist whether it is okay to combine new medications with your regular medications, including any that you purchase.
- Don't keep extra medicine on hand. You can return any unwanted or unnecessary medications to your local pharmacy.
- To help you remember if you've taken your medications, use a compliance aid box, which organises your tablets by date and time.
If you take 4 or more medicines, it is important to have a medication review. This can be arranged at your GP practice. It is usually done by your GP, pharmacist from your GP practice or another healthcare professional.
The review of medications aims to determine whether; the medication is right for you, if the dosage still helps, any side effects and how to manage them so you can take your medication effectively.
Support from pharmacy
Some local community pharmacies offer services that can help you with your medicines such as New Medicines Service (NMS) and Discharge Medication Services (DMS).
NMS can give you extra support and advice if you are commencing a medication. You can talk to a community pharmacist or you can read more about medicines here, visit Medicines A-Z - NHS and Conditions A-Z - NHS
DMS is very beneficial if you have recently been discharged from hospital. This connects you with a community pharmacist who looks at all the medicines you take. You can talk to them about:
- Any new medication that you were given in hospital.
- Any changes that were made to your medications during your hospital stay.
- All your medications and how best to take them.
You can sign up for DMS by consenting with your hospital pharmacist while on admission. They will send a DMS referral on your behalf to your community pharmacy.
Find a pharmacy
If you need to find a community pharmacy near you, or want to know their opening times or services you can check here: Find a pharmacy - NHS
Reporting side effects
If you would like to report suspected side effects to medicines, vaccines, e-cigarettes, defective or falsified (fake) products please use this website: Yellow Card reporting site
NHS website for medications- Medicines A-Z - NHS - Visit here for more information about your medications including common uses and side effects.
NHS website for conditions- Conditions A-Z - NHS - Visit here for more information about common conditions including symptoms, causes and main treatments.
Patient info website- Medicine and Drug Directory | Information and Side Effects - Visit here for more information about your medications.
Medication and Falls - Age UK - Medications and falls - Visit here for information about falls prevention and the impact of medicines.
Choice and Medication - Choice and medication – Visit here for more information about mental health conditions or medication including patient information leaflets in several languages.
Young Minds - Young Minds - Medications - Visit here for information from the charity Young minds on mental health in children and adolescents.
BUMPS - BUMPS - Leaflets - Visit here for information about medication use in pregnancy including safety information.
Medicines for children - Medicines for Children - Visit here for information about medicines in children.