As discussed in the treatment section, an individual with dementia may be taking several medications: prescription, over-the-counter, and herbal supplements. Given the fact that many people will take several medications at once, people with dementia can face difficult questions in managing their own medications:
Make taking medications a normal part of the daily routine by pairing dosing with events throughout the day, such as meal time, going to or getting up from bed, or going for a run. If your loved one does not want to take a medication at a particular time, try moving on to some other activity and then offering the medicine later.
To prevent emergencies like overdose, medication should be stored securely in a locked drawer or cabinet and not left out with your loved one. Signs that your loved one may have overdosed include uncharacteristic changes in behavior such as extreme tiredness or agitation.
Document and relay information about medication side effects or changes in behavior and ability to your loved one’s doctor. You are in a key position to help your loved one get the best diagnosis and treatment possible. In a brief appointment, the physician often cannot detect all the problems that your loved one has been experiencing.
Description: This web page lists questions caregivers should find the answers to about the medications their loved one is prescribed.
Description: This article discusses potential benefits and downfalls of electronic tools that help patients remember to take their medications. It suggests discusses factors other than memory that affect whether or not a medication is taken and also discusses the role of the caregiver in monitoring medication.
Description: This web page offers guidance on how to give medication properly. It is organized into five "rights" (medication, dose, time, conditions, and reason). It also discusses why following directions is important, common ways that medication mistakes occur, how to work with doctors and pharmacists, how to obtain medications conveniently, and medication issues for caregivers.