Submitted by: Anna Maria Smolyakova, Pharmacy Intern
Allergy season is back with a bang this year, but did you know that some common medications used to treat allergies and colds are in fact not recommended to be used by seniors ?
For a variety of reasons some medications are not suggested for the older population. As we age so does our metabolism, so seniors taking certain medications may have a higher chance of experiencing an adverse drug reaction. This could increase the risk of falls or pose a drug-disease interaction.
Common medications that are not advised are Benadryl, Nytol and some “nighttime” cold medicines. Important to remember is that these medications may have a single medicinal ingredient that has landed them on that list. Some ingredients to watch out for are diphenhydramine (ie. Unisom), and chlorpheniramine (ie. Buckley’s Complete Cold & Cough). This is by no means an extensive list and the products mentioned are meant to serve as an example only.
We’ve all once been overwhelmed by the amount of options available for treating allergies or colds, but just remember pharmacists are there to help!
Pharmacists can not only help you find the best product for your symptoms, but they are also experts trained in screening, identifying and preventing drug interactions, especially in the case of seniors. Make sure to give your pharmacist a complete list of all your medications whenever choosing an over the counter product. In doing so you could not only prevent a drug interaction, but also leave the pharmacy knowing the best choice was made. If you have any questions stop in at your local Medicine Shoppe Pharmacy.