Written by Active Minds on Thursday the 17th of September 2015.
Taking regular medication can be confusing at the best of times but, for someone living with dementia, ensuring that the right medication is taken at the right time can be even harder. Luckily there are plenty of clever gadgets and tools to help dementia patients keep track of what they need to take and when.
The most simple (but one of the most effective) of the bunch, labelled pillboxes can be really helpful when it comes to keeping track of medication. Boxes are normally separated into days and times so people with dementia have a clear and visual way of knowing when they need to take each pill. These handy labels can also help carers make sure that medication is being taken at the correct times.
If you or your loved one are relying on labelled pill boxes to keep track of medication, it can be an idea to install an automated clock calendar into your home. That way, it’s easier to see what day and what time it is and therefore which medications need to be taken. Opting for an automated version is also a good idea as these will update themselves, moving forward or backwards automatically.
One of the more futuristic options available, recorded messages act as an aural prompt. They can be recorded to play a certain message at a certain time and are a great way to remind dementia patients to take their medication.
The hi-tech version of a pillbox, an automated dispenser is designed to distribute medication at an allocated time of day. Different versions include alarms that ring when it’s time to collect medication and even a separate alarm system designed to notify carers when medication has not been taken.
If you’re finding that physically keeping track of medication is becoming a problem, you may benefit from communication aids such as signage. These can be used to help people with dementia safely find their way to the right room or to clearly label where their medication can be found.
Remembering to take different medications can be a lot easier if a routine is established early on. Coinciding medication times with tooth-brushing or meal-making can help people with dementia to know when to take pills as well as acting as a reminder at key times during the day.