Hello again and thanks for joining me! Today I’d like to talk about ways to check for drug interactions and also different ways to share your medical ID information.
Most of you that take a daily regimen of prescription and OTV drugs probably already have your very own daily medication organizer. If you don’t have one, get one! They make it much easier to keep track of what you have taken & help you see in advance when you need to call in a refill for your prescriptions. They come in a wide variety of colors, shapes, and sizes and can be found at any drug store.
Over the course of each year, we may end up needing to take additional medications on top of our anti-epileptic prescription drugs. Why? Perhaps for a cold, an ear infection, pain medications, or any other situation that may come up. If these medications are prescribed by a physician, they are able to look up any/all drug interactions between this new prescription and your epileptic drugs. But if you are simply buying something over the counter, say DayQuil, how do you know its safe for you to take?
I highly suggest putting in a call to your neurologist to double check any new OTV medication that you’d like to take. However, if its an emergency or if you are not able to reach anyone, I would suggest using this drug interaction website. I have used it many times for not only drug ingredients, but also food ingredients. It’s very user friendly and tells you any interactions that certain ingredients may have with your anti-seizure medication.
In addition to being knowledgeable about your medication, it’s important for us to carry at least one form of Medical ID. In case of emergency, this will make the care given to us much more appropriate for our diagnosis, and much quicker than if Emergency Medical Personnel has to investigate our medications prior to treating us. There are many Medical ID options available, but I will highlight 3 of them here.
Bracelet or Necklace Medical ID
The first type of Medical ID that I’d like to show is a bracelet or necklace. These can be ordered through many drug store pharmacies, or online, or also through many jewelry stores as well. Over the years I have had a few different ID bracelets, as they wear out over time. This most recent one, I added some beading to, so that it looks more like a normal bracelet but still has the Medical ID charm on it.
Cell Phone Medical ID/Emergency Information
The second type of ID that I’d like to talk about is on your smartphone. Admittedly, I am not very knowledgeable about Android phones, or really anything other than an iphone. So I’ll talk about the iphone Medical Alert here, but if you have experience with another phone option, please share that info below! When an iphone is locked (as it probably would be if Emergency Medical Personnel found us during/after a seizure) the circular Home button needs to be pushed to activate the phone. The phone will then prompt the user to push Home again to unlock the phone. After it has been pushed a second time, the user can either put in their numerical ID number, press Cancel, or press Emergency. Once Emergency is pushed, there is a red *Medical ID option in the lower left hand corner. This is used by Emergency Personnel when they find someone that is unable to communicate with them. I highly suggest that you fill this out! Even if your seizures are under control, or if you are never on your own, it is still a good idea to put your pertinent information in here. This way, if you are experiencing an aura, or for any reason are unable to communicate, your medical information will still be available. Here is a screen capture photo of my *Medical ID from my iphone. (Last names and phone numbers have been blacked out for privacy).
Analog/Paper Medical ID/Emergency Information
rd Medical ID option that I’d like to talk about as well. This one I keep on me all the time, in addition to my iphone. If you are not old enough to have a phone, or don’t usually have one with you, this is a great option for you. It is a DIY card that you can keep in your wallet next to your drivers license/photo ID. All you need is paper and some sort of card (a gift card that has been used up, or an old business card work perfectly). Cut the paper to size and simply tape it onto the card to keep it sturdy. It should now be roughly the same size as your drivers license. On the sheet put your name, diagnosis, DOB (Date of Birth) if desired, any allergies you have, what medications you take and when in the day you take them, and who your emergency contact(s) are. Here is a photo of my DIY card that I keep in my wallet. (Again last names and phone numbers have been blacked out for privacy).
If you have found any other Medical ID options or medication tracking options that work well for you, please share them below! I’d love to hear any organizational tips that have worked well for you. Thanks again for tuning in & don’t forget to Seize The Day!