Caregiver Corner: Tips for giving medication

Administering medication to someone with Alzheimer’s can be a daunting responsibility. Preventing missed pills or giving the wrong dosage are valid concerns. Here are some suggestions:

  • Learn about each medication before administering. Make sure you know exactly what each pill is for and the possible side effects.
  • Clearly explain exactly what each pill is for. Tell the person with Alzheimer’s why and how they need to take it.
  • Keep good records of each medication. Make note of dosage and frequency.
  • Organize medications. Store them safely out of reach in a locked cabinet or drawer.
  • Develop a routine. Giving medications in a specific way at specific times can help reduce conflicts. But if the person doesn’t want to take it at a particular moment, try again later.
  • Make the task as easy as possible. Ask your pharmacist for liquid, which may be easier to give than a pill, or ask if you can crush the pill and put it in food (no pill or tablet should be crushed without first consulting your physician or pharmacist).

Find out more about medication safety by visiting www.alz.org