With the myriad of medications that have flooded the market today, it can be intimidating to know which of these should be taken to help us with our medical problems.
To help our community live longer, feel better, and achieve a better quality of life, we share some points to remember when getting your medications.
There are two main types of medicines that pharmacies offer: those that need a prescription (Rx only or Prescription only) and those that can be bought without a prescription or over-the-counter medicines.
Prescription-only drugs can only be bought if a doctor writes a valid prescription. These drugs are heavily regulated and require a visit to a prescriber, a diagnosis, and monitoring by a prescriber to make sure the medication is working and working safely.
Prescription drugs are meant for one person to use to treat a specific condition, and each person has the legal right to talk to a pharmacist about the drug before starting it.
Prescription drugs must go through a long process of clinical trials, get approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and then continue to be checked for safety and side effects even after they hit the shelves.
Over-the-counter drugs can be bought at a drugstore without a prescription and taken a right off the shelf.
OTC medicines aren’t made for a specific person, but the person who uses them may want to be the only one who uses them, especially if they are creams, eye drops, or nasal sprays.
The FDA checks over-the-counter drugs, but not as closely as prescription drugs. Manufacturers are only allowed to make drugs that follow a certain formula for their strength and must have FDA-approved labels and dosages to be sold.
Even though you don’t have to talk to a doctor or pharmacist before taking an over-the-counter drug, the patient must know that these drugs still have risks. Some non-prescription drugs could interact badly with prescription drugs or cause more side effects.
It is important to tell a doctor or pharmacist about all the drugs you are taking and to follow the instructions on the label for how much to take.
Also, keep in mind that taking over-the-counter medicines still has risks:
- Your medicine could affect other medicines, supplements, foods, or drinks you eat or drink.
- Some medicines should not be taken by people with certain health problems. Some decongestants shouldn’t be taken by people with high blood pressure, for example.
- Some people have reactions to some medicines.
- Many medicines aren’t safe for pregnant women to take. Before taking any medicine, you should talk to your doctor if you are pregnant.
- When giving medicine to children, be careful. Make sure you give the right amount to your child. Use a measuring spoon or a dosing cup marked in teaspoons to give your child liquid medicine.
Here are some tips on how to choose and Sell OTC drugs:
- Make sure the self-diagnosis is as correct as it can be. Don’t assume that the problem is “something that’s going around.”
- Choose a product because it has the right ingredients for your condition, not because you know the brand name.
- Choose a product with as few useful ingredients as possible. When a product tries to treat every possible symptom, it may expose people to drugs they don’t need, add more risks, and cost more.
- Read the label carefully to find out the right dose and precautions and when the drug is not a good choice.
- Ask a pharmacist to check for any possible interactions with other medicines and to tell you what side effects might happen.
OTC drug labels often don’t list all possible side effects. Many people think that this means these drugs have few or no side effects. For example, the instructions for one painkiller say it shouldn’t be used for more than ten days. But the box, the bottle, or the package insert don’t say anything about the possible serious side effects of long-term use.
So, people with chronic pain or inflammation may take the drug for a long time without realizing that doing so could cause serious problems. So, medical experts strongly suggest that you take your medicine as required.
So the next time you visit a retail pharmacy, try to get the pharmacist’s opinion first instead of reaching out to any medicines just because they are popular or cheap.
At Cavalier Pharmacare, our helpful team will provide you with the essential information to make sense of all the available alternatives and pick the best one for you.
Feel free to contact us at 276-666-6644 to learn more about our services.