Tools and Tips to Simplify Medication Management
Taking prescription medications at the correct time intervals or proper dosage could be challenging for individuals with Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD), or seniors. They might fail to remember to take a required dose, accidentally double it, or even skip multiple days of medication.
Improper medication management leads to health issues, including worsening medical conditions or an accidental overdose. Some individuals suffer from allergic reactions to medications, and lack of oversight could lead to these dangerous situations going undiagnosed and untreated. Use these tools and tips to simplify medication management for loved ones.
Products for Simple Medication Management
Individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) or TBI could struggle with executive functioning skills, memory, or time management. Seniors diagnosed with dementia struggle with memory and time. Each individual’s medical diagnoses and symptoms are unique, and helping them learn to be more independent and remember to take their medications on time requires different strategies for each individual.
A smartwatch could be beneficial for individuals needing a simple reminder. These watches let users set reminders with visible text details. Set the timer and include a note about the medication.
Caregivers can program the watch to facilitate these reminders. Gray Matters Alliance offers smartwatches from Apple, Android, and Garmin. Caregivers can also use these watches to communicate with their loved ones, detect falls, and enable GPS tracking (for elopers). In addition, smartwatches include an SOS button that alerts emergency teams.
Gray Matters Alliance offers Dose Flip to help track and manage medication dosage and dose intervals. This pill box gives individuals or their caregivers the unique ability to set the time intervals for medicated dosage. When it’s time to take medication, the Dose Flip emits an alarm and lights up; individuals flip the device over to receive their dose of medication.
The Hero Medication dispenser provides the ideal medication management solution for individuals who must manage numerous medications. This pill dispenser stores and sorts up to 10 different medications (and can hold a 90-day supply of each medication). The device alerts when it’s time to take the medication and disburses only the necessary pills for each interval.
A smart pill dispenser simplifies medication administration and offers compatibility with other devices via a convenient app. This dispenser holds up to four weeks of medication. Choose from up to nine different rings to receive auditory alerts for medication reminders, and use preset medication dosage templates to simplify the process. Live Fine’s transparent cover lets patients see their medication for visual feedback.
Patients needing to manage more than ten medications can use the Medacube dispenser. This is the largest medication dispenser offered by Gray Matters Alliance; it can store and disburse up to 16 medications (90-day prescriptions).
Gray Matters Alliance has added a new medication management solution to its list of products. Impruvon Health provides a simple medication disbursement system designed specifically for the needs of assisted living centers and their residents. The system utilizes an app that notifies care staff when each resident needs their medication and includes pertinent details about dosage instructions. System functionalities help care facilities prevent medication mismanagement and errors that could lead to costly violations.
How to Prevent Medicine Side Effects
Proper medication management and oversight ensure patients take the appropriate dosage at the correct intervals. However, caregivers must remain diligent about the risk of medication side effects and how to spot these adverse reactions.
Every medication includes a list of the most common side effects and signs and symptoms related to a reaction that requires immediate medical attention. Caregivers should read these side effects and help loved ones understand how to communicate any abnormal feelings, sensations, and physical/emotional symptoms that are new or unique.
Allowing independence does not mean a completely hands-off approach when introducing a new medication. Be communicative with loved ones. For instance, if children with IDD or TBI are adults who live at home, watch for signs associated with adverse reactions. Again, side effects vary per medication type, and caregivers might need to watch for mental health issues, rashes, stomach issues, or even pain or inflammation.
If an individual says they are feeling unwell or are experiencing any known side effects of a medication, reach out to a doctor or medical provider. However, serious side effects like heart issues, hallucinations, or difficulty breathing/swallowing require immediate medical attention (call 911).
How to Spot a Drug Allergy
Sometimes, ‘side effects’ could indicate a more serious drug allergy. There are numerous physical symptoms of a drug allergy; common symptoms include rashes, hives, face/lip/tongue swelling, trouble breathing, and even bleeding.
A severe allergic reaction leads to anaphylaxis, which means the individual has difficulty breathing. Individuals suffering from anaphylaxis could wheeze, vomit, faint (pass out), suffer from diarrhea, experience heart palpitations, etc. Anaphylaxis requires immediate medical attention.
Find Help with Medication Management
Caregivers who need help guiding medication management for a loved one diagnosed with TBI, IDD, or a senior family member can contact Gray Matters Alliance. Our team can help caregivers find the right tools to facilitate independence while safely managing medication dosage and dose frequency. Contact us today!
Gray Matters Alliance (GMA) is committed to improving the lives of aging seniors and individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities through independent living technology, remote support tools, and educational resources. We collaborate closely with families and organizations to enable independent and secure living in preferred environments.