How Do You Organize and Manage Your Medications?
Last updated: October 2023
Successfully managing asthma can depend on many factors, one of which is medication. As a lifelong asthmatic and professional respiratory therapist, I have a comprehensive understanding of how important this essential component of disease management can be.
Over the years, I have fine-tuned both my medication schedule and adherence to a solid routine. I do not mean to imply this is completely foolproof – it is not! There is a human component (me!) that can contribute to errors and mistakes. But, by and large, the schedule and system have been consistently successful. The most common "human error" (in my case, and this is rare!), is somehow missing a dose or missing a medication. How to make up for this error, as well as others that may occur, is another story altogether!
My routine for organizing and managing my asthma medications (and others)
The prescription drugs are organized in a stable place. For me, this is my dresser. The containers and inhalers are lined up in the same order all the time. Presently there are 6 bottles (for 7 pills). I "dispense" them in the morning for a once-a-day dosing schedule. Then, I set them up for ingestion with dinner using a standard medication cup.
The non-prescription medicines (4 pills) are dispensed at the same time, also for a once-a-day dosing schedule. Then, I set them up for ingestion at breakfast. Again, a standard medication cup is utilized.
One inhaler is "as-needed" only, and the dry powder inhaler is twice a day. The inhaler I use in the morning during my morning hygiene routine. This also facilitates rinsing and gargling. I am able to repeat this before dinner, also to ensure rinsing and gargling.
I would like to point out that some of my medicines are treating other diseases, not just asthma. It is equally important for proper disease management to ensure all medications are taken on schedule.
Being flexible when necessary
My experience over the years has shown me this type of stable schedule can easily accommodate the addition and/or removal of new medicines. Other treatments can also be incorporated into the schedule rather easily. The structure of the medication administration maintains an excellent foundation for the inevitable flexibility of one’s lifestyle.
For example, during the year I find that we have social engagements, travel, and visiting, during which 1 or more meals are taken outside the home. For these happy occasions, I always have pill dispensers with me (prepared well ahead of time), to ensure I remain compliant while away.
If this runs into several days, there are handy pill organizers commercially available (and I have several), which ensure that I remain compliant while traveling. These pill organizers are also invaluable when the day’s activities will take me away from a home meal or two. When needed, I also make certain to have the non-prescription medications with me, too! As for the inhalers, I am always cognizant of having them with me as well.
I have found that coupling medication delivery with meal times ensures good compliance, as I never miss a meal! Consequently, I never miss a dose of any medication either! This helps me to do my part in managing my various illnesses.
How do you manage your asthma medications?
What do you do to remember to take your medications? Please write your most welcome comments below.
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