Taking The Pain Out of Managing Medications

Parents of rheumatology kids learn a lot about pain medications.

Parents of rheumatology kids learn a lot about pain medications.

At the end of a recent hospital stay I dropped by the nurses station to pick up the discharge medications.

A new doctor was busy writing out a lengthy set of instructions. She seemed anxious that I understand what to do and even though I knew it, I listened anyway.

After a few moments the senior nurse leaned over and reassured the doctor. “It is ok – Julia has a lot of experience with all of this.”

It surprised me how sweet this moment of acknowledgement was. Over the years parents of rheumatology kids do learn a lot about pain medications.

There are a few strategies I have found useful.

Consider A Pill Organiser
During times when there are a couple of regular medications I load up one of those pill boxes from the chemist. They have removable day strips and slots for several times in the day. The benefit is that there is less hassle about remembering when the next dose is due because it is all calculated in advance.

Email Updates
If we are in a process of gradually reducing doses or alternating between different medications I send an email to the liaison nurse to confirm the current medications and doses. This update is reviewed by our case manager. Having a written record is a useful checklist for me when I sit down to arrange each week’s medication doses.

Keep Your Local Pharmacist in The Loop
I copy in our local pharmacist now and then to update his files about what medications and doses my daughter is taking. This means he can quickly double check that any over the counter medications or occasional GP prescriptions are not in conflict with the rheumatology medications she is taking.

I’m sure you have a few great strategies of your own. Please send me an email and we can add those to a page about managing medications.

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