Research Your Prescription Drugs

With prescription drugs, don’t just rely on the package inserts for your drug information!

It seems that every time you visit your doctor, you leave with a prescription medicine. Perhaps it’s just part of modern medicine, but many physicians prescribe drugs for almost every kind of complaint. If you have chronic conditions which require that you take medications on a regular basis, you can end up with quite a collection.

Although so many of these prescription drugs are highly effective, you can also suffer the consequences of taking two drugs which should not be combined. Busy physicians don’t usually take the time to explain what the drug does, they just hand you the prescription and off you go. When the pharmacy fills your prescription, an insert is included in the bag, which describes possible side effects and warnings. This is valuable prescription drug information, but is not comprehensive. Many people don’t even bother reading them.

Perhaps because there are so many prescription drugs of extremely complex chemical combinations, it’s really essential that you take a hand in making sure you have the drug information you need to keep you safe.

Your pharmacist is your first line of defense. Pharmacists often know more about the drug your doctor has prescribed than the doctor does. You’ll be amazed at the wealth of information they can provide, right off the top of their head. If you have any questions regarding the medication you’ve been given, ask the pharmacist!

Let’s say your dentist has prescribed an antibiotic for an infection that you’re now taking. Now your regular doctor has prescribed something for a different condition. Letting your pharmacist know all of the medications you are currently taking may save you from experiencing a serious health threat. This is a good example of the type of prescription drug information that might otherwise have been overlooked.

Another way to keep you and your family safe and informed is to get one of the prescription drug information books. These are usually pocket sized books, with the information arranged alphabetically. Buy the most up to date reference, which provides entries for the newest drugs. These entries are quite detailed and more comprehensive than the prescription inserts. These books are inexpensive, generally just $4-5, a worthwhile investment in your health.

These suggestions are especially important for people who must take a number of medications, or families with children. Prescription drugs can save your life, true, but improper use or a lack of information can also land you in the hospital. So, take a proactive approach. Don’t simply rely on that insert!

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