Remembering to Take Medications
Last updated: November 2023
Remembering to take medication can be tricky, especially if you are new or newer to a chronic illness like asthma. And the more medications that are added to your regimen, the more overwhelming it can seem. I thought I would share my tips and tricks for storing medications and remembering to take them.
I am by no means a perfect medication taker. In fact, I struggle most with taking my maintenance inhaler. I do not know why I cannot seem to be consistent, but just know that you are not alone if you struggle to remember your medication.
Store it where you use it
When I was first diagnosed with health problems, I thought that all medication needed to be stored in one specific place in my house. I have seen many people who keep their meds in a box in the coat closet or in a drawer in the bathroom. But that is not always practical, and it certainly does not make it easy to take or remember to take your medication.
So my first piece of advice is to store your asthma medication where you use it.
I keep my maintenance inhaler in the bathroom because that is where I always go to take it. It is easy because I can just quickly rinse out my mouth after using it. I have a friend who stores and takes her maintenance inhaler in the kitchen for the same reason.
To me, it does not make sense to store your medication in one place, but use it in another. I am much more likely to take my medication if I do not have to go looking for it every time I need to take it.
Make it part of your routine
Many people are creatures of habit and thrive with routines. You probably have a routine when you get ready for work in the morning. You do the same thing in the same order every morning so that you do not forget something that you need before you head to the office. The same principle can be used to remember taking medicines. If you always take your meds at the same time and place every day, you are more likely to remember to do it.
I mentioned earlier that I struggle to remember my maintenance medication. I even have a routine for it...put in contacts, take inhaler. And somehow I still forget to take it. I do not know how or why, but I do. Nevertheless, I do my best to remember "contacts, inhaler."
Use a reminder app
There are so many tools available these days to help you remember to take medication. One of the more common tools to use is a pill box. They can be filled at the beginning of the week and then emptied each day. They make it easy to stay on track and help you remember if you have taken your meds that day or not.
There are lots of apps available now on your phone or computer that can help remind you to take your medication. Some apps let you store the amount of pills you have remaining and set different reminders for each medication.
About 2 years ago I invested in an automatic pill dispenser and it has been one of the best things I have done for myself. Not only does it store my medications, it reminds me, relentlessly, to take each dose and even tells me when I need to get different meds refilled. It is been a game-changer for me. I know that an electronic pill dispenser is not in everyone’s budget, but it is just another tool to help with medication management.
How do you remember to take your asthma medications?
There are numerous other ways to stay on track with medication, you just have to find the right tips and tools that work for you. It can take some trial and error before you figure out a good routine, but perhaps I gave you a couple of ideas of things to help you remember your meds.
How do you remember to take your medication? I would love to hear your tips in the comments!
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