Woken up with toothache or muscle pain? It’s easy enough to deal with, isn’t it? You just open up the […]
Woken up with toothache or muscle pain? It’s easy enough to deal with, isn’t it? You just open up the medicine cabinet and pop a couple of ibuprofen tablets and wait for it to pass.
Except…have you read the label? No? Well, then you’re setting yourself up for trouble because ibuprofen needs to be taken with food to avoid it irritating your stomach.
It’s just one of the very common health mistakes most of us make at some time. In fact there are a whole host of things we do wrong without realising. Here are some of the most common… and some clever suggestions from the experts at LloydsPharmacy on how to avoid making them!
1. YOU’RE TAKING OUT-OF-DATE MEDICINES
A study has found one in four of us has taken an out-of-date medicine.
But it can be dangerous. At best, the treatment might not be as effective as usual but at worst, it could actually harm you — using an old insulin pen to treat your diabetes could send your blood glucose levels soaring.
So clean out your cupboard and check all the expiry dates before taking old ones to a LloydsPharmacy to dispose of properly.
2. YOU FORGET TO TAKE YOUR TABLETS
A staggering 95pc of us have forgotten to take our medication at some point. While it’s not always a problem, sometimes there can be serious consequences: if you don’t take the whole course of antibiotics, the infection might return.
What’s more, it costs the NHS a fortune – an estimated £90m a year. So make sure you remember, whether by getting into the habit of taking the same pill at the same time each day, setting an alarm to prompt you, downloading an app on your phone or buying a pill box reminder and dispenser — check out LloydsPharmacy’s range.
3. YOU KEEP MEDICINES IN THE BATHROOM CABINET
It’s the most obvious place to keep your pills but sadly the hot, steamy atmosphere of the bathroom makes it about the worst place in the house to store drugs.
That’s because moisture and heat can damage their active ingredients, making them less effective. Taking them might also harm you – if aspirin is heated, the result can irritate your stomach.
The instructions will tell you where to keep it – make sure you always store medicines with this leaflet and in their packet. And keep out of reach of children and pets.
4. YOU RINSE YOUR MOUTH AFTER BRUSHING
Cleaning your teeth twice a day helps keep them in good health and can help prevent gum disease. But swilling your mouth out with water immediately after you’ve brushed makes it less effective.
That’s because doing so will wash away the concentrated fluoride in the toothpaste you’ve used, thus reducing its effects. So, once you’ve finished, simply spit out any excess paste in your mouth and walk away.
The same is true if you usually use a mouthwash straight afterwards – so choose a different time to do so, remembering not to eat or drink for 30 minutes afterwards so it can work properly.
5. YOU USE KITCHEN SPOONS TO WORK OUT DOSAGES
As the song says, a spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down – but actually, it’s much more likely to make the wrong dose of medicine go down.
A study found parents who used spoons to work out the amount of medicine to give their children were 50pc more likely to administer the wrong dose. Not giving enough might not adequately treat an illness and could lead to medication-resistant infections whereas too much may cause illness or even be life-threatening.
Instead use droppers and syringes that allow you to properly measure how much you’re giving.