5 Tips for Choosing the Right Pill Organizer

Managing a chronic illness typically involves taking some form of medicine regularly, whether it’s daily, weekly, or once a month. For many with chronic conditions, however, sticking to a prescribed medicine regimen isn’t always easy especially when complications present themselves like frequent dosing, multiple prescribing doctors, and similar sounding and looking pills.

The issue of Medicine non-adherence

Many patients have some difficulty or confusion around taking medicine as prescribed, so much so that the a shocking 50% of those on long-term pharmacotherapy treatments for chronic illness do not take their medicine as prescribed. Not only does medicine non-adherence result in rehospitalization and treatment complications, but thousands of people die each year due to mismanagement of medicine schedules.

The responsibility for medicine adherence does not fall solely on the shoulders of the patient, but must be a collaborative effort among patients, their doctors, and family and caregiver networks. One of the expert suggestions for simplifying taking medicine at home is to take advantage of pill organizers, or small containers which help you sort and organize your pills for the day/week/month. For the best pill organizers, .

Benefits of using a pill organizer include:

  • Simplifying the process of taking medicine each day from opening multiple pill bottles to opening a single compartment with the day’s dose already sorted
  • Preventing mistakes in under or overdosing on medications
  • Providing structure for pill-taking, especially when different caregivers are switching off days and times in which they are present to help out
  • By filling a pill organizer a week in advance, it gives you a better idea of whether you need to go ahead and refill medicines which are running low
  • Making it easier to pack and access medicine when traveling

Choosing the right pill organizer for you

When it comes to selecting a pill organizer to help you or your loved one keep track of their regular medications, you want to take many things into consideration including the size of pills, the frequency at which pills are taken, as well as physical limitations to opening and holding things, i.e. if arthritis makes grabbing small instruments difficult. These tips will help you find the right pill organizer for you:

Daily, Weekly, Monthly Organizer

Pill organizers are offered in a variety of makes and models, including day of the week boxes, time of the day (AM/PM) boxes, and even full 30 day month boxes. Depending on how often you take medicine, and for how long, you’ll want to choose a pill organizer that is going to meet your frequency needs.

Color-based Time Compartments, i.e. morning, noon, and night

The best pill organizers will vary colors to prevent confusion, for example, all morning pills compartments will be in one color while all evening pill compartments are in another. This type of color coordination helps to reinforce memory of which pills are taken when, as well as prevent confusion.

Ability to Open and Read It

Pill organizers with translucent lettering may not be the easiest to read for some with vision impairment. And organizers with small, hard to open taps may make taking medicine more difficult for someone with rheumatoid arthritis. Be smart about selecting a pill organizer which is easily accessible and provides clear, visible messaging.

Size of Pill Compartments

Depending on the size and number of pills you are taking, you will want to select a pill organizer with compartments that are large enough to fit each dose. Some pill organizers actually serve as dispensers as well, making it more convenient to push a button and receive the right pills at the right time.

Portability

If you plan on traveling, or have to take medicine out on the road or to work with you, a pill organizer which packs and travels well with you will be key to staying on top of your schedule. More pill organizers come in discreet shapes and sizes too, to make them carrying on your person or in a purse easier as well.

 

Image courtesy of [Areeya] at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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