Just say ”No.” Nancy Reagan’s slogan for her anti-drug campaign rings true today. Especially for your aging parent. The wrong drugs, the wrong dosage, the wrong combination of drugs can do a number on your parent’s health.
“The general rule of thumb is ‘Less is Best,'” says Grace Gana, Clinical/Geriatric Pharmacist with Elim Pharmaceutical Consultants, LLC. Grace visited our team meeting at Silver Age Housing and Care Referrals last month. Medications that purport to heal can do more harm than good, she told us.
Inappropriate Drugs for the Elderly–Drugs affecting the central nervous system, either directly or indirectly, have potentially serious adverse effects on the elderly. The biggest offenders are
- Sedatives/Hypnotics (eg. Ambian, Sonata)
- Antipsychotics (eg. Seroquel)
- Benzodiazepines (eg. Xanax, Ativan)
- Antihistamines (eg. Hydroxyzine)
- Tricyclic Antidepressants (eg. Amitriptyline)