Your provider(s) prescribed your medication for a reason.
Be honest with your provider(s) about your medications. Inaccurate information can lead to misinterpreted symptoms, overlooked warning signs, inappropriate treatments or wrong medications.
Talking with your health care providers about your medications increases your chances of taking them safely and effectively.
Tell your provider if you notice your symptoms are not improving or you have any side effects. There may be another option that’s better for you.
In addition, ask your provider:
- What is the brand and generic name of my medication?
- Why do I need to take this medication?
- Will this medication work safely with all my other medications or herbal supplements?
- How should I store it?
- When and how often should I take this medication? As needed or on a schedule?
- Do I need to take it with food?
- Are there any blood tests I need to complete before I start the medication?
- How often do I have to complete lab tests while I am taking the medication?
- What are the common side effects and how can I deal with them?
- How long does it take to work?
- How will I know the medication is working for me?
- How long must I take the medication?
- What should I do if I forget to take the medication?
Take your medications as prescribed.
Many people take medications as directed by their provider to treat short and long-term illness. It may be the best way to manage symptoms and stay healthy.
Additional tips for managing medications:
- Make sure you fully understand how to take your medications.
- Don’t stop taking your medication without consulting with your doctor - even if you start to feel better. Stopping some medications can cause symptoms to get worse, withdrawal, or increase your risk of suicidal thoughts and behaviors.
- Get all your prescriptions filled at one pharmacy. This will help your providers watch for medications that may not work well together and help you avoid a harmful situation.
- Make sure you keep a current list of all of your prescriptions, over-the-counter medications, and herbal supplements. Review your list with your providers often.
- Keep medications where you’ll notice them.
- Medication logs can help you remember all the medications you’re taking and track behavior changes. It can also help your provider when making adjustments to your treatment plan.
- Set a daily routine. Tie the times you take your medication(s) with another daily routine. If you take your medication after you brush teeth, then brushing your teeth becomes a prompt to remind you to take the medication.
If you need help scheduling a follow-up appointment with your provider(s), call toll-free 1-800 873-2246, TTY 711.