Switching to a new medication involves an adjustment period, no matter who you are. This period can be challenging, as initially, you may feel as though the new medication isn’t working. Your doctor or those around you may tell you to wait a couple of days or weeks to ensure that your body has time to adjust to a new prescription or dosage.
However, how can you ensure the medication is doing what it should, especially if you are experiencing adverse symptoms? There are things you can do to help monitor your adjustment and check in with your doctor. Follow these tips as you adjust to a new medication.
Know Your Medications
First and foremost, you should educate yourself on your medications. Many facilities offer medication-assisted treatment (MAT) to help those in recovery. For example, you may be taking a new antidepressant, naltrexone to cope with opioid cravings or an antipsychotic for schizophrenia symptoms. No matter what you are taking, you should know the name, dosage, and date prescribed to help keep track of the adjustment period.
Keep a Treatment Log
If you suspect a new medication may not be working, keeping a detailed treatment log can help. Each day, you should write when you took your medicine, how you felt before and after taking it, and the dosage. This way, your doctor can have a detailed record of your time on the medication to make an informed judgment if the medication is working for you.
Possibility of Negative Symptoms
Sometimes, switching to a new medication before the old one is out of your system can result in adverse side effects. For example, switching to another antidepressant directly can result in agitation, increased heart rate, and confusion. These symptoms are typical as your body adjusts and should not be cause for alarm. Knowing that these can happen can help you manage anxiety regarding switching medications.
Trust Your Gut
Ultimately, you are the only one who knows what is going on inside your body. You know what you are feeling, and if you believe a new medication isn’t cutting it after the adjustment period is over, talk to your doctor. You may be able to switch to another medication or find another treatment plan that works better for you.
Switching to a new medication can be nerve-wracking, especially if you aren’t sure if the medication will work for you. However, there are things you can do to monitor the medication’s usefulness in your recovery. Many treatment facilities offer medication-assisted treatment (MAT) to help individuals recovering from substance use and mental health disorders. Alta Loma Transformational Services works with men from various backgrounds to find the treatment they need for successful recovery. We can help you navigate mediations and more to ensure success. Call us today to learn more at (866) 457-3843.