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Medicines

Basic supplies and storage

Supplies
Illnesses like coughs, colds and minor accidents can happen at any time, so it's a good idea to keep a small supply of simple remedies in your home.
Make sure your medicine cabinet contains important basic items like:
• paracetamol or ibuprofen
• something for stuffy noses such as a decongestant
• sachets of oral rehydration solution to prevent dehydration which may arise from diarrhoea or vomiting
• antacids
• antiseptic solution
• anti-histamine: tablets or medicine, not the cream
• as well as a thermometer, a section of plasters and dressings, safety pins, tweezers and sharp scissors.

Storage
Keep your medicines in a secure, dry place, out of sight and reach of children or anyone who might take anything by mistake. Keep medicines in their original labelled container and don't store medicines which are past their expiry date. Your local pharmacist can dispose of them safely.

Medication concerns

If you’re worried about the side effects of medication you are taking, you can
- keep a list of the effects that you think are due to the medication and talk to you doctor or pharmacist about this.
- contact the NHS 111 Service who will ask you a series of questions to assess your symptoms and immediately direct you to the best medical care for you.

Medication reminders

If you need help with remembering to take your medicines, ask your doctor or pharmacist for advice. There are also a variety of medication management tools available.

Collecting prescriptions

If you are having problems with running out of your tablets or collecting your prescription you could
• ask a friend, neighbour, relative or carer if they could collect for you
• ask your local pharmacist if they can deliver to your home or use one of the repeat description delivery services run by major pharmacies
• Check your local Good neighbour groups for help

Review your medicines as you get older

As you get older, the way medicines work in your body can change. Some medicines, or combinations of medicines, can make you sleepy or dizzy and can cause you to fall. Ask your GP, pharmacist or Community Matron to review all the medicines you take, even over-the-counter medicines.

More information

Medicines information from the NHS
Find NHS Services
Coping with pain

Last reviewed: 21/04/2016

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