It’s called polypharmacy and is the tendency to take large amount of medicinal species from the elders who ingest approximately 10 tablets per day. It is a dangerous habit and often useless because many of the drugs are completely superfluous.
Because many older people take drugs?
The answer is not as categorical as it might seem. The reasons, in fact, are many.
The Presence of more diseases: The population is among the longest in Europe, and reach considerable age is both a sign of a healthy lifestyle persisted for years that certainty of having to live with disorders that accumulate over time, small ailments that with aging become large impediments.
Chronic diseases: The often old age is synonymous with chronic or degenerative diseases against which there are no cures for solutions but consist of many drugs and therapies sometimes just to stem the consequences of the disease.
Self-diagnosis: In too many situations, friends and relatives give advice on medicines to be taken in case of headache, back pain, cough, and so on. These listed are trivial noise but that in an elderly person may have important causes and, especially in the presence of pathologies diagnosed, require a medical opinion: a considered harmless drug, for example, could alter the effectiveness of a therapy already initiated to counter a chronic disease.
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Non-adherence to therapy: This is an issue of great importance, still valid but especially in the elderly. We talked about the generics and brand : the elderly do not trust to take the same pill forever if this is sold in a box of color and different size, or try the sachet formulation of a drug now available only on pill or vice versa, or even claim the brand medicine because it does not recognize the equivalent. This attitude often undermines the effectiveness of the procedure carefully, because the lack of improvement caused by the lack of adherence generates the need to hire, at the same time, other drugs.
Afraid to feel bad: Some people think that drugs are harmful and therefore do not take them and who, on the contrary, he is afraid of being sick and therefore has at home any medication. This is equivalent to ingest many drugs as there are warned disorders, and for an elderly person are many.
The absence of clear guidelines
But the main cause of polypharmacy is, one: the absence of clear guidelines and dedicated to the elderly. The abuse of drugs and their arbitrary assumption is a real risk for the patient as well as an expense in many cases avoidable.