Schizophrenia: Encouraging Someone to Take the Medicines
Here are ways to help your family member take the medicines:
Talk about medicines in a way that is
meaningful to the person. For example, point out the reasons to take
medication. Say, "Your medicines help quiet the voices you hear," or "Your
medicines help you study and keep your grades up." Link taking the
medicines with things that the person enjoys.
Give the person
options about what to do if he or she wants to stop taking medicines. Talk
with his or her health professional about what the options are. Make changes in
the medicine routine only after consulting with the health professional, and
keep records about these changes and their effects.
Ask how the
person is doing with the medicine treatment. Say, "How many pills do you have
left?" instead of "Are you taking your pills the way you
Talk with the person about any side effects experienced
from the medicines. Take any complaints seriously and see whether there is
anything that you can do to help or that can be done
Help plan for
relapses even if your family member continues to take
the medicines as prescribed. Relapses are part of the
Accept the fact that some people will not take medicine
as they should even with a lot of support. Do not tie your concern and caring
to whether your loved one takes the medicines. For those who won't or are
unable to take daily medicines, injections may be a good option. Discuss
injections with your health professional to see whether they may be right for
the person with schizophrenia.
If you need help encouraging your family member to take prescribed
medicines, talk with a health professional who can tell you more about the
expected results of taking the medicines, what side effects to look for, and
how to manage them.
How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.