With the rising population of seniors in the Lehigh Valley, the use of pills, liquids, and other medications is on the rise. Many are prescribed by healthcare professionals, while others can be purchased off-the-shelf from pharmacies and even convenience stores, without prescriptions. As new remedies are offered and brand names increase, there can be much confusion when it comes to keeping up with essential medications and their requirements.

“Polypharmacy” is a word describing, in general, the use of multiple medications to treat one or more conditions. As you can imagine, great caution is needed to balance the meds and keep up with correct dosages. This can be difficult enough for anyone, and a special concern for someone with Alzheimer's or other dementia. The WHO estimates that 50% of patients with chronic illnesses do not take their meds as prescribed, with 10% of hospital admissions and 23% of nursing home admissions being due to what is called “nonadherence.”

Perhaps the most common reason people don’t take their meds is forgetfulness — forgetting to take, order, or pick up their meds.

Another common reason is the challenge of transportation, picking up their prescriptions.

A multiplicity of meds, dosages, and regimens can overwhelm a person to the point where they just give up.

The escalating cost of medications can be a hurdle, as well as the perception that the medications are not really necessary, because “I’m feeling better.”

There are technological and pharmacist / medical professional solutions for these problems, but one of the best protections is an alert, dedicated loved one who can monitor the use of meds and be an advocate for the patient when it comes to relating to the pharmacist and healthcare professionals.

South Mountain Memory Care focuses on high-quality, personalized care. South Mountain Memory Care is proud to offer a wide range of resident-focused daily activity programming to our residents. Each neighborhood offers activity space for group and one-on-one activities.

The brand-new building is a stand-alone memory care community, meaning that the entire building, staff, and programs, are designed to serve residents with cognitive issues. To ensure person-centered care and attention, we have accommodations for up to 28 residents. The building is divided into two neighborhoods (wings), each offering 10 private suites and 2 semi-private suites. South Mountain Memory Care is located in the Allentown suburb of Emmaus, Pennsylvania, and is easily accessible from the Lehigh Valley, New Jersey, and Philadelphia. For more information, go to southmountainmemorycare.com.