Your medicines may not work if you ingest them at the wrong time of day, or combine them with the wrong foods and drinks. 

Are you one of those people who pops pills at random? Do you simply put them into your mouth when you remember, and follow this up with a cup of coffee or coke? If you answered yes to these questions, keep reading to check which of your habits is killing the effects of your meds.

#1 You down pills with tea, coffee and fizzy drinks

If you swallow your pills together with a fizzy drink, tea or coffee, then please stop. These beverages may interfere with their action, and even cause side-effects like nausea or giddiness.

#2 You don’t check on the right time to take them

The best way to have certain medicines is after a meal, with a full glass of water. Other pills must be taken on an empty stomach. Just make sure you know which category your medicines fall into. You can check this online, or with your doctor.

#3 You give up at the slightest discomfort

Don’t be scared by minor side-effects such as nausea, drowsiness, and so on. Bear in mind that it takes a few weeks for the body to adjust to any new meds.  Don’t give up too quickly. Instead, try and vary your medication schedule. Change the timings, or check if there’s a “slow release” version. Remember, it takes time to see the positive effects of some medicines.

#4 You refuse to skip the booze

Avoid drinking alcohol while you are on certain medications. Do check online, or ask your doctor about this. Even a tiny amount of booze makes you ill, if you have it with a drug called metronidazole, for example.  Also, grapefruit juice interacts adversely with at least 50 different drugs.

#5 You start worrying about side-effects

Some possible side-effects of  drugs like steroids – high blood pressure, weight gain and diabetes- are worrying. But these are only associated with large doses. Common inhalers and creams have very little, so don’t worry about these. Though the list of side-effects for every drug is long and scary, some are very rare. So do discuss your fears with your doctor, and get comfortable with his prescription.