Tips To Avoid Dangerous Drug Interactions
Patients rely on prescription medications to help them feel better. But medications can make you feel worse, especially if mixed with over the counter drugs, alcohol or grapefruit juice etc. Drug interactions may make your medication less effective and lead to unexpected side effects, or increase the action of the medication.
Reduce the risk of drug interaction by using common sense and asking your doctor or pharmacist the right questions. Here are a few tips that can help you avoid dangerous drug interactions.
1. Read the Labels
Most of the people misinterpret or ignore reading drug labels. Read the labels of your prescription and over-the-counter drugs thoroughly. Pay close attention to active ingredients and warnings mentioned on labels to avoid the chances of drug interaction.
Many medicines come with a warning “Do not take with alcohol.” Pay attention to this because alcohol makes you light-headed, drowsy, and less coordinated. Mixing alcohol with certain drugs can magnify those effects, and even increase your medicine’s potency or worsen its side effects.
2. Stick to a Pharmacy
It’s recommended to fill all of your prescriptions from one pharmacy. Purchasing drugs from one pharmacy or drug store allows a pharmacist to alert you on dangerous drug interactions, and allergies, if you’ve any.
3. Visit Your Doctor
Risk of drugs interaction increases with your age and each medicine you take. Visit your doctor once or twice a year to review all of your medications, supplements, and vitamins that you take. Ask your doctor about medication problems, drug interactions, whether you need to switch to less costly or safer medicine or eliminate a medicine that you no longer need.
4. Go Online
If your doctor is unreachable and you’re really worried whether it’s safe to take painkillers while taking any other medication, you can turn to various online portals that can help you to check results of drug interaction. CVS Pharmacy, AARP and Medscape are online checkers that offer information on possible drug, supplements, and food interactions.
Have you experienced any drug interaction? How you survived it?
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