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Types Of Medications Seniors Should Be Cautious Of

Many seniors are on some type of medication. However, some medications can be dangerous to a their health. While others may cause serious side effects that make it difficult for them to do basic tasks. It is important for elderly people and people who care about their elderly loved ones to know which drugs are considered safe and which should not be taken by an older adult. This article will go over the most common types of medications that seniors should take with caution because they have potentially harmful consequences.

Antidepressants

Some antidepressants may affect the ability of older adults to complete mental tasks, which means they could have a hard time with daily life activities such as cooking a meal, shopping in a grocery store, or even hanging out with family and friends. In extreme cases, the elderly person might not be able to remember how to get home from a new location.

Painkillers

Taking these types of medications can be dangerous because they make it difficult to sense pain. Seniors may not realize when they’ve injured themselves and the injury could become much more serious than it normally would be if the senior recognized that they were hurt immediately after the incident occurred. A fall could lead to broken bones or cuts that need stitches, but if the person is taking these types of drugs, there’s a chance that they won’t notice their injury until hours later when they begin to feel pain from the damage.

Cholesterol-Lowering Drugs (Statins)

These types of drugs are commonly used to treat high cholesterol. They could cause the elderly person to become uncomfortable, tired, nauseous, and give them indigestion. These symptoms can make it difficult for seniors to continue their daily activities. If they do not move around much then they will become weaker which can lead to serious injuries if there is a fall or accident.

Antihistamines

These drugs are used to treat allergies and can cause dry mouth, drowsiness, blurred vision, constipation, and confusion in seniors. This can make it difficult for them to stay hydrated, which is important for their overall health. Additionally, antihistamines might also interact with other medications that the elderly person is taking which could lead to dangerous consequences.

Benzodiazepines

These are medications that are used to treat anxiety, insomnia, and seizures. They can be habit-forming and may lead to a condition called “benzodiazepine withdrawal syndrome” which is characterized by symptoms such as, feeling anxious or agitated, sweating, muscle cramps or spasms. If a senior is taking benzodiazepines and experiences any of these symptoms, they should seek medical attention immediately.

Sleep Aids

Many seniors take sleep aids in order to get a good night’s sleep. However, these medications can be dangerous because they may cause the elderly person to become confused, have difficulty breathing, and even fall asleep while they are still driving. If a senior is taking a sleep aid and needs to drive somewhere, they should ask someone else to do the driving for them.

Blood Pressure Medication

These types of drugs can make it difficult for seniors to stay hydrated. The elderly person may find it more difficult to get up and get a drink of water throughout the night. If they are taking another medication that causes them to become dehydrated then this could be dangerous, but if they are taking multiple medications that cause dehydration then it could lead to serious health problems. Blood pressure drugs also increase the risk for dizziness and falls in older adults which can lead to broken bones or other injuries.



Anti-inflammatory Drugs

This type of drug is used to treat pain and inflammation. However, it can also cause seniors to become dizzy and lightheaded. This can lead to falls and serious injuries. Additionally, anti-inflammatory drugs may also cause problems with the liver and kidneys in seniors. So it is important to speak with a doctor before taking this medication.

Anti-Psychotics

These drugs are used to treat schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, but they can make seniors feel drowsy, tired, and cause dry mouth. Dry mouth is a condition in which the salivary glands do not produce enough saliva which can lead to tooth decay or a dry throat. If a senior has a dry throat then they may have difficulty swallowing which could be dangerous if there’s any food stuck in their throats.

Muscle Relaxers

This type of medication is used to relieve muscle pain and tension. However, they can also cause seniors to feel lightheaded and drowsy. This can lead to falls and serious injuries. Additionally, muscle relaxers may also interact with other medications that the elderly person is taking which could lead to dangerous consequences. Be sure to speak with a doctor before taking this medication.

Anti-Anxiety Medication

 

 

This type of drug is used to treat anxiety disorders. However, they can also cause seniors to feel drowsy and confused. This can lead to falls and serious injuries. Additionally, anti-anxiety medications may also interact with other medications that the elderly person is taking. Which could lead to dangerous consequences. Speak with a doctor before taking this medication.

Anticholinergics

These are medications that are used to treat a variety of medical conditions. Including overactive bladder, allergies, and sinus infections. However, they can also cause seniors to become very confused and have difficulty with their memory. Additionally, anticholinergics may also interact with other medications that the elderly person is taking which could lead to dangerous consequences. So it is important for seniors to speak with a doctor before taking this medication.

Conclusion

There are a number of different medications that seniors should be cautious of. These drugs can increase the risk for falls, serious accidents, dehydration, dizziness, and other health problems. So be sure to speak with a doctor before taking any medication and let them know about all of the medications you are currently taking. This will help to ensure that you are taking the safest medications possible!

 

 

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