by Lisa Lozano
Most of us are in a hurry when we hit the drug store and want to just pick up our meds and get out of there. But your pharmacist is a wealth of information that you should take advantage of. Pharmacist Dr. Stacia Woodcock is laying out four crucial tips.
Tip 1: Get to Know Your Pharmacist
If you fill all your prescriptions with the same pharmacist and get to know him or her on a first-name basis, he or she will have a full picture of your medication history and be able to advise you of any possible interactions or side effects.
Tip 2: Ask Your Pharmacist if It’s Possible to Save Money on Your Prescription
Rather than not filling a prescription because it will be too expensive, ask your pharmacist if you have any options to reduce the cost. Sometimes they can find you a comparable less expensive medication and call your doctor to change it, or inform you about discounts through the drug manufacturer. Also, some pharmacies have prescription savings programs that could get you antibiotics for free, or generic medications for as little as $4, Dr. Woodcock says.
Tip 3: Read the Back of the Box When Choosing Cold Medication
Dr. Woodcock advises looking at the back of the box and checking out the “Drug Facts” box. This contains the active ingredients and what they do. She ays you should match your symptoms to the purposes of the various ingredients (which are also laid out in laymen’s language in the Uses section) to choose the right cold medicine. She advises making sure that 75% of your symptoms match what’s on the box, to avoid taking extra medication that you don’t need, which could actually make you feel worse.
Tip 4: Ask Your Doctor How to Administer Medication
Dr. Woodcock says that she’d love for more patients to ask her how to administer their medications. She demonstrates how to properly administer eye drops – and it’s probably not the way you’re doing it!
So we’re challenging you to introduce yourself to your pharmacist and get to know him or her a little better. It could save your life!