What You Need To Know Before Taking Medication

Written by Featured Contributing Author 

We are fortunate enough to live in a time when access to medical care and medication is at an all-time high. A wide variety of medications have been developed to treat a range of illnesses and can significantly improve quality of life as a result. Medication can make us feel instantly better or else have a cumulative effect. It can be to treat a temporary condition or infection or be intended to manage a long-term condition. But whatever medication we have been recommended or are considering taking, we need to apply the same questions. We need to be sure that it is safe, suitable, and that we are aware of any potential risks. If you or a loved one have some doubts about medication, consider the questions below.

What Is The Alternative?

This can be a broad question. But it can be helpful to consider the alternative from several angles. You should consider what might happen if you take no medication at all, for example. Whether your condition would be likely to worsen or whether it is more likely to develop your immunity and resilience, for example. You should then aim to research what the alternative medications are. Ask yourself if there is anything similar with fewer reported side effects, or one that has been more vigorously tested. You could also investigate whether there are natural alternatives. The clinical trials of natural medications do not receive as much funding. So they rarely enjoy the same amount of attention as conventional medicine. But some of the success rates associated with their ingredients can be startling, depending on your condition.

Get Informed

Be sure that you or your loved one has researched alternative options widely. That way you can be confident that you are making an informed decision. It can be helpful to consult reputable medical websites, journals, and even the news. Not all medications are as controversial as the Zofran off-label use or Roacutane, for example. But being aware of any surrounding issues can help us to feel empowered to ask questions and make decisions.

Discuss It With Professionals

We should never feel like we have to make important, potentially life-changing decisions alone. Discussing our options with a professional can include having a discussion with our own doctor or even seeking a second opinion. Depending on the condition being treated, we may even choose to seek the opinion of other qualified professions. A nutritionist can tell us how to support our treatment with diet, for example. They can advise on ingredients that have been shown to have healthy or “superfood” properties. A physiotherapist might be able to advise on more physical treatments for conditions and can ensure we are exercising in a safe way. We can even seek the advice of a medical lawyer if the situation warrants it. Treatment and medications can have financial implications for families. We shouldn’t hesitate to discuss these with financial professionals as there may be help and support available to us. They may be able to advise on how it affects our insurance or whether we should be budgeting differently. Whatever the outcome of the discussion, we can feel more empowered to take control of our own life and health.


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