Health and medical

4 Taking medication

Jaffa cake trick

I hide my son's medication under the orangey bit of a jaffa cake!

Home-made nebuliser stand

We made a nebuliser stand out of a microphone stand. We used some elephant tubing instead of a mike. We position it near to Laurie while she sleeps.

Tablet splitters

You can get tablet splitters, useful for cutting tablets exactly into two or four pieces (but very sharp so be careful).

Use all of the dissolving tablets

Tanya has medication in dissolvable tablet form and I have found that it is easier to put the tablets in an oral syringe, then draw the water up into it rather than dissolve the tablets in a cup of water. This ensures that all the medication is administered rather that some being left behind in the cup.

Just in case

We keep a list/chart of drugs that Layla takes and put it where we keep the drugs so in the event of being unavailable, someone will be able to see what drugs are needed to be administered and the amounts and times.

Swallowing medicines

Here’s what worked for us: When she started on thyroxine tablets (which are very small) I taught her to put it at the back of her tongue and take a big mouthful of milk to wash it down. We put her tablets in one of those little measuring pots (they come with cough medicine) and now she can swallow several quite large tablets at once with no problems.

Tic tacs worked a treat

To help get my son used to swallowing tablets I started him off with tic tacs. He has autism +ADHD and had big problems with things in his mouth. Once he got used to the tic tacs I would use a sports bottle to give him a drink (better flow control) and then challenge him to swallow the tic tac with the water. It didn't matter to start with if he chewed the tic tac. Now he takes his meds with no problem at all.

Snap em!

Use your mobile phone to take a photo of all the medicine bottles / packets the person you care for needs. Simple, but really useful if there's a sudden admission to hospital or confusion in the pharmacy. You will never be stumped by the milligrams per kilogram question again!

Liquid medicine syringe and bottle stopper

When you get near the bottom of a bottle of liquid medicine, instead of pouring it into the lid or a spoon (and making a sticky mess!) draw it up into the syringe to measure it, then you can get a bottle stopper device which fits into the top of the bottle and stays there, so you can accurately measure using a syringe straight from the bottle.

Keep track

I keep a list of all my son's current medication, doses and frequency taken in the back of his red book. I also keep a note of his seizure management plan and contact details of all the professionals involved (a BIG list!) This way, I am always prepared at appointments and/or hospital admissions.

Cup space chamber

We used a polystyrene cup as an emergency space chamber for our young son's inhaler. Push the inhaler through the bottom of the cup and use as a mask over the nose and mouth. Perfect on holidays or to stash at grandparents' houses if space chamber prescriptions are in scarce supply.

Keep it together

We have got a plastic over-door shoe holder for keeping syringes, flexitainers and giving sets in. It doesn't take up any room, and it's see-through so everything is easy to find.

Tablet boxes

We use 7 small tablet boxes labelled with days of the week (or you can buy a pill organizer) loaded with the correct tablets. Saves time and effort especially on the move.

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Using these tips

These tips have been contributed by members of our online community. We hope they will give you some ideas to try, but if you need further help why not post a question to the community or talk to one of our community advisors. If you have any concerns about your health or the wellbeing of someone you are caring for, please consult a doctor or qualified professional.

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