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What to Do When Elderly Parents Will Not Take Their Medication

By October 16, 2018Uncategorized

If you have an elderly parent or relative who has a serious medical condition, you may be having trouble getting them to take their medication on a regular basis. This is a major problem in the United States. According to a study published in Risk Management and Healthcare Policy, as many as 50 percent of patients fail to take their medication as it is prescribed.

There are strategies that you can use to make sure your elderly parent complies with the doctor’s orders. In some cases, there may even be free home healthcare services available to assist your vulnerable loved one with medication. Here, our team highlights four important tips for people who are having trouble getting a family member to take their medication.

1. Find Out Why They are Not Taking Their Medication

If your loved one is not taking their medication, you need to figure out exactly why this is happening. It could be a number of different reasons. Some common examples include:

  • Dislike of the taste;
  • Frustration with the side effects; and
  • Forgetfulness.

Only when you fully understand the problem can you actually take effective action to address it. In some cases, you may simply need to help them stick to a schedule. In other cases, you may need to work with a doctor or medical professional to find a way to reduce uncomfortable side effects.

2. Stay Positive and Understand their Concerns

If your parent is refusing to take their medication or they do not seem to be serious about following the doctor’s guidelines, you need to keep a positive attitude. It is understandable to be concerned, stressed out, frustrated, and even annoyed. However, those emotions probably will not help you fix the problem. You need to understand their situation and help them find an answer.

3. Make it Important to You — Follow Up

While staying positive is crucial, you should not treat skipping medication as a minor or frivolous issue. Quite the contrary: you need to make this important to you. Let your parent know that this matters. Follow up on the issue. Do not let it persist and become a habit.

4. Be Ready to Seek Professional Help

In some cases, professional help may be required. It could be as simple as having a routine conversation with your parent and their doctor to impress upon them the importance of sticking to the prescribed medication schedule. Alternatively, you may want to look into the available home healthcare services to ensure that your parent gets their medication and any other attention that they need.

Explore Your Home Healthcare Options

At United Energy Workers Healthcare and Four Corners Health Care, we are proud to offer the very best free home healthcare services to DOL EEOICPA and RECA beneficiaries. Through these federal programs, we can help qualified patients get access to the care that they need to live the highest possible quality of life.

For additional information on our home healthcare services or EEOICPA/RECA, please do not hesitate to contact our compassionate team of experts. We have locations in nearly two dozen states and are expanding our services in the future.