A kitchen with post it notes on the cabinet as reminders to take medicaitons

Importance of Medication Compliance

Taking daily medications to keep COPD under control is very important to keep you breathing easy. This means always taking your medications, every day, even when your breathing is great and you aren’t experiencing any symptoms. Maintenance inhalers that you take everyday are meant to be taken every single day in order for them to be effective. Here are some tips for maintaining medication compliance.

Know your medication formulary

In a perfect world, health insurances would all cover the same medications at minimal cost. But in this reality, they all have different drug formularies and sometimes cover different medications. With my insurance, I get a paper copy of my formulary every year as well as notice if any of my current medications are no longer covered. Formularies also usually have different levels or tiers for medications each with different copays.

Communicate any changes in COPD with your doctor

If your COPD is acting up even though you are taking your medications, be sure to let your doctor/healthcare team know. Even though you may be 100% compliant with your medication regimen, it doesn’t mean you won’t ever experience flare ups. If you are finding that your medications are no longer as effective as they were, bring that up with your doctor at your next appointment. COPD is a disease that changes over time and it is not uncommon to need your medications increased, changed or more added to your regimen.

Set reminders to take medications

If it is difficult to remember to take your medications, set reminders! Many people will set timers on their cell phones for the same time or times every day. You could also make notes and place them on the bathroom mirror or above the kitchen sink or wherever you think would help you remember. Don’t be afraid to ask family members in your home to also help remind you if needed. There is no shame in asking for help!

Give yourself some grace when it comes to COPD medications

We all forget to take our medications every once in awhile. Don’t beat yourself up over it and try to remember better the next time utilizing reminders etc. No one is perfect!

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