Staying Organized Organization helps manage prescriptions

August 17, 2018

When you go to the doctor, the solution to health issues is usually another prescription. So before you know it, you have multiple reoccurring pills to take. In addition, many of us may already use supplements like vitamins/minerals. Further, many have a favorite over-the-counter regimen.

If you want to be organized, it is best to keep all medications together in one place, preferably a kitchen shelf. Separate over-the-counter medications from prescriptions on a single or multilevel spinning spice racks. This way you always know the status of your supply. If you store it in the kitchen, bedroom and bathroom, you really cannot assess your supply well.

If you can, use a computer-generated mail-order system as you will find this is the most efficient. For recurring prescriptions, a 90-day supply is most economical. Many of the computerized mail-order systems prompt you when you are due to run out.

When it is time to fill up your weekly a.m./p.m. pill case, gather all your pharmacy pill bottles. Rather than fill one pill case for a week, fill four or five for a month or more. This process works best if two people fill the pill cases. One person counts out the pills needed, and the other places in the pill cases. When the pill bottle is nearly empty, it is now time to renew the online 90-day order. With this system, you never run out, because you are ordering at least 30 days before you need the medication.

As an extreme organizer, also maintain a computerized spreadsheet of all your medications with the generic name, brand name, dosage amount and time (morning, afternoon, evening). On your list you can alpha/numerically code medication, and then do the same for the bottle. Aspirin could be No. 1 on the spreadsheet, so you would code the cap of aspirin with No. 1. Color coding also can work the same way.

Not taking the right medication amount at the right time can be a life-threatening issue. Keep yourself safe by keeping your prescriptions organized.

Maria Ward has been a lifelong organizer applying techniques to personal life, business and learning. She worked as a professional organizer and was a member of the Houston professional organizers group. Now retired, she offers organizing classes at Lone Star College’s Academy for Lifelong Learning Program. Email: mariacward@gmail.com.

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