Millions of consumers are using the Internet to get health information. And thousands of web sites are offering health information. Some of those sites are reliable and up-to-date; some are not. How can you tell the good from the bad?
Some websites that sell medicine can be not state-licensed pharmacies or aren't pharmacies at all; or may give a diagnosis that is not correct and sell medicine that is not right for you or your condition; or won't protect your personal information.
You have to talk with your doctor and have a physical exam before you get any new medicine for the first time. Use only medicine that has been prescribed by your doctor or another trusted professional.
Buying your medicine online can be easy. Just make sure you do it safely.
Although medicines can make you feel better and help you get well, it's important to know that all medicines, both prescription and over-the-counter, have risks as well as benefits.
The benefits of medicines are the helpful effects you get when you use them, such as lowering blood pressure, curing infection or relieving pain. The risks of medicines are the chances that something unwanted or unexpected could happen to you when you use them. Risks could be less serious things, such as an upset stomach, or more serious things, such as liver damage.
There are several types of risks from medicine use: a) The possibility of a harmful interaction between the medicine and a food, beverage, dietary supplement (including vitamins and herbals), or another medicine. Combinations of any of these products could increase the chance that there may be interactions. b) The chance that the medicine may not work as expected. c) The possibility that the medicine may cause additional problems.
In many situations, the expert advice of your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care professionals can help you make the decision.
To lower the risks and obtain the full benefits of medicines you need a)talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care professionals; b)know your medicines--prescription and over-the-counter; c)read the label and follow directions; d)avoid interactions; e)monitor your medicines' effects--and the effects of other products that you use
You need keep an up-to-date, written list of ALL of the medicines (prescription and over-the-counter) and dietary supplements, including vitamins and herbals, that you use--even those you only use occasionally.
Important things is tell to your doctor about any allergies or sensitivities that you may have. Tell about anything that could affect your ability to take medicines, such as difficulty swallowing or remembering to take them.
Before starting any new medicine or dietary supplement (including vitamins or herbal supplements), ask your doctor again if there are possible interactions with what you are currently using.
You always have to pay attention to how you are feeling; note any changes. Write down the changes so that you can remember to tell your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care professional.