General directions  for medicines use

General directions for medicines use

“Take one tablet three times a day after meals.”
Anyone who has been to a pharmacy is familiar with those words from pharmacists.
But rarely do we ask the pharmacist why some medicines should be taken before or after meals.
We know there is a reason but we never ask for it.
This article seeks to give you those reasons.

 Take Before meals

This means take your medicines 30minutes before meals. It could even be an hour before meals for some medicines. It doesn’t mean take minutes before meals.
•        The reason is that effects of some medicines could be lost or delayed by the presence of food.

Take After Meals

Means take your medicines 5 minutes or immediately after your meals. Do not take 30 minutes or an hour after the meal.
•        The reason is that some medicines can irritate your stomach and this can be relieved by the presence of foods in the stomach. Apart from this, some medicines work best in the presence of food.

Complete the Course of treatment

This means TAKE THE MEDICINES FOR THE DURATION STATED BY YOUR DOCTOR, EVEN IF YOU FEEL BETTER! If asked to finish the medicine, finish it!
The reason is that it takes a complete dosage to successfully kill the germs (Bacteria and viruses) in your body making you sick. If you do not finish your medicines, the germs could find a way of overcoming the power of the medicines you are taking and you remain sick. That means the germ could be resistant to your medicines, leaving you sick!

Vitamins and supplements

It is often advised to take vitamins during the day, after a meal.
Never take supplements on an empty stomach.
Reason: The effect of the supplement will be lost as they quickly pass out in your urine (Vit B and C)
If asked to take your medicines three times a day it means eight hour intervals.  If asked to take it two times per day it means twelve hour intervals. Four times a day means after every six hours. This is of great importance in ensuring that the concentration of the medicine in your blood, needed to heal you is maintained! However, do not take your medicines more than the prescribed interval e.g taking your tablets five times a day instead of three times as stated, regardless of the pain you are going through. Taking too much of the medicines could lead to toxic effects rather than greater healing effect!

Retšelisitsoe Nkhahle

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