Medication is the final decision of a doctor both for the cure and the prevention from a disease, as well as for the relief from it. However, drugs might have negative effects on the patients. This type of danger is increased especially among the elders, not just because of the age, but also because of the big amount of drugs they have to take. In average, an elder person takes 4 to 5 different prescribed drugs daily, as well as 1-2 drugs upon his or her initiative. Many of the undesired effects of those drugs are the result of the interaction between them. So, the more drugs one takes, the higher the possibility of an undesired reaction. The frequency of the undesired reaction is higher for those who take more than two drugs per day. In general, the higher the age average of the population gets, the more drugs are produced and consumed, and therefore the more the side effects caused by them.
It is well known that drugs make bones stronger, cure illnesses, subdue depression, relief from pain and reduce fever. However, there are also negative sides. Most of them, when prescribed, are safe. In any other case, they can provoke many side effects, such as dizziness, nausea, puking, diarrhea, bleeding, etc.
It is therefore necessary that the patient knows all of the side effects that can be provoked by the drugs he or she is taking. It is also very important to know, whether the drug the patient is taking needs regular observation or not, as there are cases that for example, a monthly blood test has to be done.
The problem is not caused just from the prescribed drugs, but mainly by the drugs that patients choose to take without any medical instructions, as they consider them ‘innocent’. For example, paracetamol, a common analgestic, when taken in overdose, it can induce liver damage, especially if it is combined with alcohol consumption. The worst thing is that, the more medication a person receives, the possibility that those drugs interact with each other increases.
So, in order to take drugs safely, it is essential that all of the side effects of the drugs are well known. The patients should always follow their doctors’ advice and not cease or start the therapy whenever they want. Right use of medication means that the patient takes the right medicine, at the right dose, at the right time, in the right way. This will definitely contribute in having the best control of one’s health as well as in improving the quality of his or her life.