Seniors may want to take precaution with their medicine

Kevin Magna

June 22, 2011

Elderly individuals may have a higher likelihood of falling if they take medications, such as sedatives, anti-depressants, heart medicines and other pharmaceutical drugs. In order to lower the risk, seniors and their caregivers can speak with doctors to determine the dangers of combining medications, according to Timewise Medical. If an elderly person does suffer a fall, medical alert systems can be useful in contacting emergency response teams.

In 2003, researchers from the School of Pharmacy at the Virginia Commonwealth University studied the role of the pharmacist in preventing elderly falls. They found that when pharmacists reviewed their patients' medications for discrepancies, the individuals' risks of falling were greatly lowered. Pharmacists can also help older people sort out their prescriptions if they have multiple doctors.

The Baltimore Sun reported that adults over the age of 40 are responsible for approximately 16 percent of all calls made to poison control centers throughout the United States, and while this number seems low, this same group accounts for more than half of poison-related deaths. The Maryland Poison Center reports that older individuals should remember to read the labels of their medications every time they take them to ensure that they are not mixing them up.

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