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Six Mistakes You Are Making With your Prescriptions

Update Date: Oct 17, 2014 04:35 PM EDT

When it comes to taking prescription drugs, it is important to be educated about the medications and what they do to your body. However, many patients continue to blindly take whatever their doctors give them without considering factors such as cost and side effects.

Here are 6 common mistakes that you could be making:

1. Buying brand names over generic

Just became certain medications have a brand name, it does not mean that they are more effective. Generic drugs are made with the same active ingredient and will have the same effect on whatever illness you are treating. On the plus side, generic drugs are also much cheaper.

2. Mixing drugs with food and drinks

Some medications can react negatively when mixed with certain foods or drinks. The one food that you have to be extra careful about is grapefruit. When certain drugs are combined with grapefruit or grapefruit juice, it can lead to deadly consequences. Always ask your doctor or pharmacist about the kinds of foods that can be problematic.

3. You do not talk to your pharmacist

As a part of the procedure, your pharmacist will ask if you have any questions concerning your medications. Instead of rushing to leave, take advantage and ask the pharmacist whatever you have on your mind regarding your medications.

4. You do not check your Rx Label

Always check your labels before leaving the pharmacy. Even though mistakes might not occur often, there is always a chance that the pharmacist gave you the wrong drugs. In order to be safe, remember to read the labels on all of your prescription bottles right when you get them.

5. You store your medications in the bathroom

How you store your medications can affect the drug's effect. Many people tend to store their drugs in the bathroom, which is not ideal. The moisture that builds up can degrade the medication. The best place to store your prescriptions is in a dark cabinet away from moisture.

6. You do not dispose drugs correctly

Many people who have leftover drugs will keep them in their medicine cabinets. Even though many drugs are still effective after two years, getting rid of certain drugs, such as painkillers, can reduce risk of drug abuse. When you are getting rid of your drugs, do not flush them down the toilet because these drugs can hurt the environment. Instead, put them in a sealed bag and throw them out. In addition, certain pharmacies and facilities also take back medications.

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