5 Considerations When Starting New Meds

If your doctor has recently given you a new prescription for medicine, you may be hesitant to try it. There’s so much in the news these days about side effects, adverse reactions, and general difficulties. So unless you’re in an emergency, consider the following before starting your prescription.

Research the Drug

Your first step is to research your newly prescribed drug. Read about how it works and what it is intended to do. Take a look at both the brand and generic names to get a full picture. You might start with credible medical websites from well-known organizations and hospitals, but also check out legal sites like Nadrich & Cohen to see if there are any lawsuits surrounding the drug. This can give you important clues about its safety and effectiveness.

Learn About Side Effects

Also, pay close attention to information about the medication’s side effects. You need to know what you might experience when you start taking a new prescription. Remember as you read that some side effects are rare, but others, usually more mild ones, are fairly common. Take a look, too, at information about drug interactions, and notice if any of your current prescriptions are listed as a possible trouble spot. If you have any concerns at all, talk to your doctor right away.

Talk to Another Doctor

In fact, if your research leads to significant doubts in your mind about this new prescription, you may want to meet with another doctor for a second opinion. Don’t feel like you’re being disloyal to your regular doctor by doing this. You’re the one who must take charge of your health care, and that means being proactive and getting all the information you need to make a good decision. Another doctor may have an alternative that will be a better fit for your situation.

Keep a Diary

If after your research you decide to begin taking the new prescription, keep a diary. Jot down the day you started the medication, and record the state of your health at the time. Then make a note each day about how you’re feeling. You can simply write “no change” if that’s the case, but you may also celebrate improvements. On the other hand, though, you might notice new symptoms, particularly some of the side effects you researched.

Stay Alert

Your diary will help you stay alert to changes in your condition, and you should be especially mindful when you’re starting a new prescription. If you notice any of the serious side effects listed in the drug information you found, go to the emergency room immediately. If you’re experiencing significant side effects that may not be dangerous but are still negatively affecting your life, talk to your doctor about adjusting the dosage or trying something else.

Your New Meds

Your new medications may work amazingly well for you and do exactly what they’re intended to do. But you should still take an active role and research each prescription thoroughly. Then keep track of how you’re feeling, and stay alert for potential side effects so that your medication journey is as smooth as possible.

Scott is the editor-in-chief of Spice Market New York. He is also an author and publisher of his own craft.