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Medication is something that needs to be prescribed properly as well as consumed properly. Roughly 7 million people misuse or abuse prescription drugs each month. This includes pain relievers, tranquilizers, sedatives and stimulants. Misuse of medication can occur anywhere with anyone including at home, in a nursing home, and on the streets.
Nearly 60% of prescriptions drugs used no medically are obtained from family members and close friends. Abusers take the drug to get a high. Abusers often times go ‘doctor shopping’, use deception to get prescribed medication, alter prescriptions, and steal drugs.
People who misuse prescription medicine can be doing so intentionally or unintentionally. They may not be taking the medication according to the directions, bingeing, consuming though an alternative way other than directed, and may have drug-seeking behaviors. Drug misuse can occur in nursing homes as nursing home negligence and abuse.
Here are some things to consider when taking prescriptions medicines:
•Always follow the directions. Prescriptions and directions are based on several factors including weight, age, and the minimum amount to treat a condition compared to the maximum amount that can result in harm.
•Dispose of medications properly. People often flush unused or unwanted medicines down the toilet or sinks to prevent young children or pets from consuming them if found. This still has a negative effect by putting the medication in the water supply. The best solution to getting rid of unwanted or unused medication is to take it back to a pharmacy for disposal as a hazardous waste.
•Know the expiration dates. Expired medicine does not work as well and can be harmful. Be sure to clean out your medicine cabinet periodically to prevent the accidental use of expired medicine.
•Don’t be afraid to ask questions. If you are unsure about any medications you have been prescribed, just ask. This makes sure you will get the best treatment possible.